SYRACUSE In overtime, Syracuse University football senior cornerback Kevyn Scott made the defensive play of the contest, saving the Orange in Saturday’s wild contest against the Toledo Rockets in the Carrier Dome.
Scott, who had been maligned for undisciplined coverage in the last three games, intercepted Austin Dantin’s pass in the right corner of the end zone, cutting in front of two Toledo receivers.
Now with the ball, the Orange featured conservative play calls on its OT possession. Running backs Antwon Bailey and Tyson Gulley drove the ball to the Rockets’ 15-yard line before Ross Krautman booted in the game winning 27-yard field goal.
Syracuse won, 33-30, in yet another close game and avoided the upset despite a stiff challenge by the Rockets from the Mid-American Conference that included, late in regulation, a blown call that went in the Orange’s favor.
“We played a very good football team,”said head coach Doug Marrone. I’m glad that they were up to the challenge because we needed to play hard to win this game. If we let a little bit down, we would have been in trouble.”
The bottom line was that SU, who improved to 3-1 on the season, was very fortunate to topple 1-3 Toledo. The Orange lost most of the statistical categories, including total offense, passing yards and time of possession, but delivered a few big plays and got one gigantic break.
Late in the fourth quarter, the Orange regained a 29-27 lead on a Ryan Nassib 18-yard TD lob pass to Alec Lemon in the back of the end zone with 2:07 left. Then Krautman, normally reliable on extra points, hooked the PAT wide – but officials called the kick good.
Even after a long look at instant replay, the call stood, much to Toledo’s dismay. That botched extra point loomed large because if the call was made correctly, SU would have only led by two, and Anthony Casano’s short field goal at the end of regulation would have been a game-winner.