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'Cuse Drops A Tough Contest In Death Valley University Athletics

The Orange travelled to Death Valley this weekend to take on the twenty-fifth ranked Tigers. Syracuse stayed with LSU throughout the contest, but came up short as the Tigers (3-1, 0-1) beat the Orange (2-2, 0-0), 35-26.

This contest started quickly. LSU barreled into the end-zone on a Derrius Guice one-yard touchdown just nine seconds into the contest to take the 7-0 lead. Syracuse quarterback Eric Dungey was intercepted on the first play of the game to set up the Tiger score.

SU kicker Cole Murphy knocked a 42-yard field goal of the season through the uprights halfway through the first quarter, cutting the LSU lead to 7-3.

The Syracuse defense shined throughout the first half. After holding the Tigers to 10 total yards in the first quarter, the secondary allowed a 43-yard touchdown pass from LSU quarterback Danny Etling to Stephen Sullivan, which put the Tigers up 14-3 with four minutes left in the first half. Teams headed into the locker room with that same score.

Syracuse also went into the locker room with only three points the last time it faced LSU. The Orange managed to score 21 points in the second half when it faced then eighth-ranked Tigers two years ago in the Carrier Dome.

Syracuse backup quarterback Zach Mahoney had an impressive showing that day, with 154 yards in the air and three touchdowns. He was no match for former LSU running back Leonard Fournette. The current Jacksonville Jaguar had 244 yards on the ground and a pair of touchdowns in the 34-24 win.

The third quarter started as quickly as the first, with Etling finding Drake Davis for the 87-yard touchdown pass 12 seconds into the second half to break open the game at 21-3.

Four minutes into the second half, SU’s Devin Butler found Erv Phillips for a 30-yard touchdown off of a reverse from Dungey.

LSU sent its freshman quarterback Myles Brennan into the game midway through the third quarter to replace Etling. Minutes later, the Tigers scored on a Darrell Williams 20-yard rush touchdown to take a three score lead, 28-10.

Syracuse punter Sterling Hofrichter was a bright light for the struggling Orange. He averaged around 47 yards per punt on the night, while landing four inside of the LSU 10-yard line, two of which were down at the two-yard line.

One of Holfrichter’s excellent punts spurred an Orange comeback after he pinned the Tigers inside their own five yard line. Syracuse then grabbed two points back on a safety, thanks to SU defensive veteran Paris Bennett, to cut the lead to 28-12.

The Orange capitalized on the ensuing possession, capping off a 10 play, 72-yard drive with a 14-yard Dungey scramble, cutting the deficit to single digits after Dino Babers chose not to go for the two-point conversion.

Syracuse was at LSU’s doorstep halfway through the fourth quarter. Dungey found SU wide receiver Steve Ishmael for the 22-yard score. Ishmael’s first touchdown of the season cut the LSU lead to two, 28-26.

LSU sealed the game with a 20-yard rushing touchdown by DJ Chark with three minutes to go, keeping Syracuse at bay for the final minutes of the contest.

Eric Dungey finished his night 32-52 for 265 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Dungey also lead the Orange in rushing yards with 27 yards and one touchdown on the ground. Syracuse faces a tough North Carolina State team next Saturday at 12:20pm.