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The Telegram
  • COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Orange bowl-eligible after stunning win over BC

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  • SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Syracuse quarterback Terrel Hunt picked the perfect time to come of age.
    With bowl eligibility on the line for the Orange, the sophomore capped a regular season that has been something of a struggle, hitting tight end Josh Parris with an eight-yard touchdown pass with six seconds remaining as Syracuse stunned Boston College 34-31 on Saturday.
    Hunt was 29 of 43 for 270 yards and two touchdowns passing and rushed for 90 yards and another score, outgaining the Eagles by one yard.
    Most importantly, he guided Syracuse 75 yards to the winning score moments after throwing an interception that sent many fans for the exits.
    The victory made Syracuse eligible for the postseason for the third time in four years.
    “This was my best game — ever,” said Hunt, who was beaten for the starting job in preseason by Oklahoma transfer Drew Allen. “To have a game like this and win a game for the seniors, it was amazing.”
    The victory was oh-so-sweet for first-year coach Scott Shafer, who has had to juggle his lineup as injuries mounted. Parris, a redshirt freshman, stepped in for the injured Beckett Wales and caught seven passes for 47 yards and the first two touchdowns of his career.
    “How many said it was over?” an animated Shafer said afterward, praising the raucous Carrier Dome crowd. “Our kids didn’t. This is a team of character.”
    Boston College (7-5, 4-4 ACC) had won four in a row behind star tailback Andre Williams, the nation’s leading rusher, but he suffered a shoulder injury in the third quarter and did not return, finishing the game watching from the sidelines. Averaging 6.5 yards a carry coming in, Williams finished with 29 yards on nine carries and scored BC’s first touchdown on a 26-yard run in the first quarter.
    “There was no letdown,” said BC tailback Myles Willis, who gained 70 yards on 17 carries in the second half. “They have confidence in me.”
    It was a must-win game for Syracuse (6-6, 4-4 ACC), and Hunt provided the dramatic finish after the Eagles had settled for a field goal after a late turnover.
    On the winning drive, Hunt fumbled, but center Macky MacPherson fell on it. Hunt followed by hitting Alvin Cornelius III for 14 yards before the winning touchdown, which sent the Syracuse bench rushing onto the field in celebration.
    It was a tough loss for Boston College quarterback Chase Rettig, who rallied the Eagles after Williams went out. He passed for 168 yards and two scores and stunned Syracuse with his footwork, rushing for 85 yards and scoring once on only four carries.
    “They ended up having that drive. Give them credit,” Rettig said. “That’s just how it goes sometimes.”
    Rettig had provided BC with the go-ahead score with his legs. He ripped off an impressive 54-yard run, starting left and cutting completely back across the field before being tackled at the Syracuse 17. He scored on a keeper with 7:49 left for a 28-24 lead.
    Page 2 of 2 - BC linebacker Steele Divitto intercepted Hunt with 2:49 left and Nate Freese kicked a 21-yard field goal as the Eagles seemed to have the game in hand.
    Syracuse had taken a 24-21 lead on Ryan Norton’s 42-yard field goal late in the third, and he added a 44-yarder with 5:03 remaining in the game.
    Something had to give in this one. Williams entered the game with 2,073 yards rushing and Syracuse was one of three FBS teams, along with Ohio State and Wisconsin, not to allow a 100-yard rusher this season. Williams had nine 100-yard games and three straight 200-yard games coming in.
    Hit hard repeatedly in the first half, Williams was hurt on a run up the middle on the first play of the third quarter in a big pileup that also sent Syracuse linebacker Marquis Spruill to the sidelines.
    With their star in the locker room, the Eagles tied the game at 21-all. Rettig had scrambles of 16 and 13 yards to key the drive and hit Jake Sinkovec for a nine-yard touchdown.
    With their season on the line, the Orange scored three straight times in the second quarter. Parris caught a one-yard touchdown, George Morris scored on a four-yard run, and Hunt on a one-yard keeper.
    Rettig’s nine-yard touchdown to C.J. Parsons on a throwback pass in the final seconds of the second quarter made it 21-14 Syracuse at halftime.
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