Syracuse, New York

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Our first trip (together) to a Syracuse Orange football game would be a welcome diversion from the past few days. Flooding overtook our area on Wednesday night, and to be able to escape from the devastation, if even for only a few hours, was what we needed.

Hit Syracuse around lunchtime, and went to Faegan's for some food. Walked around the hill/Marshall Street for a bit afterwards, before going to the quad to watch the band do their pre-game show. Then it was off to the Dome!

Ironically, Syracuse's opponent on this day - the Rhode Island Rams - was also the Men's Basketball team's opponent the first time Jill and I saw them play at the Dome as well! Syracuse played in pure Syracuse fashion, trying their best to lose the game, but the eventual victors at the final horn.

We went to Quaker Steak and Lube afterwards for dinner before making the drive home.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Senior quarterback Ryan Nassib tied the Syracuse record for completions in a game with a 29-of-37 performance for 318 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Orange (2-0) past Rhode Island (0-1), 21-14 on Saturday afternoon at the Carrier Dome.

With the score tied at 14 with 12:26 left in regulation, the Orange went to work on its own 20-yard line and put together an eight-play, 80 yard drive capped by a Nassib pass to Michael Acchione for his first career touchdown reception. Nassib was five-of-five for 65 yards on the eventual game-winning drive.

The SU defense preserved the Orange lead late in the game with two straight sacks from linebackers Marquis Spruill and Dom Anene. On fourth and 24, Phillip Thomas intercepted a deep pass from Steve Probst, his second interception on the day with 1:29 left in the fourth quarter to secure the win.

Nassib reached the 3,000 career passing yards plateau, placing him eighth on SUís career passing yards list with 3,252. Nassib and Van Chew also set career highs on a 62-yard pass and catch midway through the second quarter. Chew had eight catches for a career-high 134 yards.

Rhode Island forced a three-and-out from SU to start the second half, and the Rams offense promptly put together a six-play, 75-yard drive completed by an Anthony Baskerville diving catch in the back left corner of the endzone off a 15-yard pass from Steve Probst to level the score at 14.

Probst was 14-of-30 for 154 yards, while also adding 46 yards on the ground. Baskerville led all Rams receivers with seven catches for 88 yards.

Following a 13-play, 86-yard drive capped by a 26-yard touchdown run by Travis Hurd to tie the score at seven six minutes into the second quarter, Nassib and the offense responded with a score of their own, highlighted by the 62-yard pass and catch to Chew. SU ran their hurry-up offense on the ensuing play, and Nassib found Alec Lemon in the corner of the endzone for the score.

After the Orange picked up two quick first downs on their opening drive on plays from Adam Harris and Antwon Bailey, Nassib was picked off by Devon Dace at the Rams 30-yard line. It was Nassibís first interception since November 27 at Boston College last season (50 attempts).

Syracuse marched down the field on the teamís second drive, and kept the series alive by going for it on fourth-and-five from the URI 32-yard line. Nassib took the snap and moved the chains on a quick pass to Chew over the middle, giving him a reception in 15 consecutive games. On the next play, Nassib ran play action and found Chew again for a 22-yard connection and an Orange touchdown to cap off an 11-play, 73-yard drive.

The Orange plays its first road game of the season next Saturday when SU travels to take on Southern California. Kickoff is set for 8:00 p.m. EDT and will be nationally televised on FX.

Total Mileage: 173 Miles

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