|Posted on November 12, 2022 at 11:10 PM|
Article by Dan Tortora
The Syracuse Orange returned home to the Dome for their seventh and final home game of the season, hosting the Florida State Seminoles, with both teams bowl eligible at 6-3 apiece.
Florida State came in trailing Syracuse for second in the Atlantic Division of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), with the Seminoles at 4-3 and the Orange at 3-2.
Syracuse opened the game with possession, but quickly gave the ball back on a three-and-out drive. They would go without a single first down on their first three drives of this contest, with three-straight three-and-outs.
Florida State was the "reverse flash" to Syracuse, scoring on two of their first three drives of the game, relatively effortlessly when they got into the redzone, with the first score of the game by either side being on a three-yard quarterback keeper by red-shirt junior signal-caller Jordan Travis and the second from Travis to sophomore wide receiver Malik McClain who shook off his defender, cashing in on a 15-yard pass play.
With 2:26 remaining in the first quarter, the Seminoles led 14-0 from these aforementioned scores.
The first score by the Orange would come on their fourth drive of the match-up, off of a 30-yard field goal by redshirt-senior kicker Andre Szmyt to bring the score to 14-3 Seminoles at the 13:32 mark of the second quarter.
On the second play of the following Florida State drive, Travis would get stripped by redshirt-freshman linebacker Derek McDonald and sophomore rover Justin Barron would recover the ball at the Seminoles' 23-yard line.
The Orange would lose seven yards on two plays, leaving Szmyt with a 53-yard attempt that would go right and fall short, giving the ball right back to the Seminoles on their own 35.
Both teams would trade punts on their next respective drives before Florida State scored on their first play of the drive that started on the Syracuse 24-yard line when Travis tested sophomore cornerback Duce Chestnut in single-coverage. Chestnut went for the waist of redshirt-sophomore wide receiver Johnny Wilson and Wilson remained upright, shedding Chestnut en route to a 24-yard score to make it 21-3 with 5:47 remaining in the opening half.
Travis would get sacked for a five-yard loss courtesy of junior linebacker Mikel Jones followed by back-to-back false starts, eventually kicking a 40-yard field goal off of the foot of redshirt-sophomore kicker Ryan Fitzgerald, moving the Seminoles ahead by three touchdowns 24-3 as the first-half game clock expired.
It took Florida State seven plays to score on their first drive of the second half, with Travis connecting with redshirt-sophomore Kentron Poitier for the five-yard touchdown to elevate the Seminoles to a 31-3 advantage less than four minutes into the third quarter, at the 11:37 mark.
After the Orange punted away their first possession of the half, the Seminoles would score again, this time on a trick play with redshirt-junior tight end Wyatt Rector sending a pass to Travis for a two-yard score on 4th-&-2, advancing Florida State out to a 38-3 lead with 5:21 remaining in the third quarter.
Syracuse would be held scoreless in the third quarter for the third time in the last four games. Over these four games, the Orange have totaled a mere 10 points in the third quarter, happening at home in a 41-24 loss to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, while going scoreless in the third quarter versus the Clemson Tigers and Pittsburgh Panthers on the road, and now the Seminoles at home.
With approximately three minutes to go, Syracuse Head Coach Dino Babers put backup redshirt-freshman quarterback Carlos Del Rio-Wilson into the game, relieving Shrader of his duties. Shrader ended the day 6-for-16 (37.5%) for 65 yards, no touchdowns, and no interceptions.
On the Seminoles one-yard line with under 15 seconds to play, Babers refused to call timeout, watching his team rush to the line as time expired, leaving the score at 38-3 Seminoles.
With the win, Florida State improved to 7-3 overall and 5-3 in the ACC, while Syracuse fell to 6-4 on a four-game losing streak and 3-3 in the ACC. This victory also ousted the Orange from the second spot in the Atlantic Division, with the Seminoles taking that place behind the Tigers of Clemson.
The one silver lining for Syracuse football history was that sophomore running back Sean Tucker moved into the top four all-time in career rushing yards. He came into this match-up with 2,899 yards, behind Orange and Miami Dolphins' great Larry Csonka's 2,934.