Syracuse dims the Flames and secures a 24-21 win in the anticipated Syracuse-Liberty match-up. Andre Szmyt drilled a 35-yard field goal that won it all with no time left on the clock.
With over 20 recruiters in attendance, the pressure was on for both teams’ players, especially Liberty’s QB Malik Willis. The Orange came back for revenge after a loss against Liberty last year, therefore bringing their win count to two against The Flames.
With the win, Syracuse improved to 3-1 on the season. Liberty fell to 3-1. The Orange hits the road for its next game to face the Florida State Seminoles. That game kicks off at 3:30 p.m. eastern on Saturday, October 2nd.
Garrett Shrader started off as the Orange’s QB and Malik Willis was the starting QB for the Flames. Liberty’s kicker, Alex Barbier, missed a 36-yard field goal attempt while RB Sean Tucker literally “carried” the Syracuse Orange through the first quarter. RB Shedro Louis and Malik Willis rushed the ball over and over to get the ball down the field, but the first quarter ended with no score for either team.
Shrader started the second quarter strong by landing a rushing touchdown a little over a minute in (7-0). Sean Tucker later rushed the ball to complete a 27-yard touchdown (14-0). This only fueled the Flames and Malik Willis threw a 24-yard catch to WR Noah Frith and made it 1st & goal. This play ends with a Liberty touchdown for a score of 14-7 at halftime.
The score became 21-7 after Shrader made his second rushing touchdown of the night. This is his fourth rushing touchdown of the season. A close call landed Liberty with another touchdown bringing the score to 21-14 with 2:57 left in the third quarter.
Liberty ties up the score 21-21 for a nail-biting fourth quarter when Malik Willis threw a pass to WR Demario Douglas for 6 yards. WR CJ Daniels almost secured a touchdown but went out of bounds after catching a 35-yard pass. After back-to-back scores by Liberty gave the Flames the momentum, DL Cody Roscoe forced a Willis fumble which LB Mikel Jones recovered at the Liberty 30 late in the fourth quarter.
The last couple minutes brought a classic game of cat and mouse across the field, but Syracuse would win the clock from there to set up the game-winning field goal made by Syracuse's kicker Andre Szmyt as time expired (24-21). Tucker ran for 169 yards and a touchdown on a career-high 32 carries to lead the Orange.