SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) Freshman Eric Dungey, making his first college start, threw for two long touchdown passes in the second half, rallying Syracuse past Wake Forest 30-17 in the Atlantic Coast Conference opener on Saturday.
Rendered ineffective for the better part of three quarters, Dungey, starting in place of injured senior Terrel Hunt, hit Brisly Estime on an 89-yarder late in the third quarter and Steve Ishmael for 53 yards early in the fourth.
Syracuse (2-0) has won four straight in the series.
Syracuse played turnover free for the second straight week and Dungey stunned Wake Forest (1-1) with his first completion of the second half and just his fifth of the game. He eluded the pass rush on first down from his own 11-yard line and hit Estime with a sidearm throw over the middle at the 37. Estime did the rest, outracing the defense for the third longest touchdown in school history and a 20-17 lead with 2:01 left in the third.
After Syracuse forced a punt, Dungey kept alive the ensuing drive with a 20-yard completion on third-and-10, the Orange's first success in seven tries on third down. Two plays later, he hit Ishmael along the right sideline over the outstretched arms of a Wake Forest defender, and Ishmael danced untouched into the end zone.
Dungey finished 8 of 13 for 221 yards.
The Syracuse defense knocked Wake Forest quarterback John Wolford out of last year's game, rendering the Demon Deacons' already-struggling offense even more ineffective in a 30-7 win. Wolford ended his freshman year last fall with a three-touchdown performance against Duke and picked right up last week in a 41-3 win over Elon, passing for three TDs and a career-high 323 yards. He also had a 70-yard scoring run.
Wolford was poised to lead the Demon Deacons to the victory in this one before Dungey's heroics. He was 18 of 22 for 234 yards in the first half, hitting K.J. Brent with a 40-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter and scoring on a 6-yard run in the second. The Demon Deacons outgained the Orange 265-108 and took a 17-13 halftime lead.
Wolford finished 30 of 45 passing for a career-high 373 yards but was intercepted three times and sacked four times as the Orange defense stepped up the pressure in the second half.
Syracuse failed to convert on all five third-down chances it had in the opening half and fell behind despite two forced turnovers by the Orange defense.
The Syracuse defense set up the game's first points late in the first quarter. Cole Murphy kicked a 35-yard field after Parris Bennett's interception at the Wake Forest 42.
Defensive end Donnie Simmons gave the Orange a 13-7 lead early in the second when he intercepted Wolford's pass in the right flat and returned it 41 yards for a touchdown. Last year, Syracuse defensive ends Micah Robinson and Rob Welsh intercepted passes in a 30-7 win at Wake Forest.
Syracuse, which lost Hunt for the season with a torn Achilles suffered in the first quarter against Rhode Island, also played without Ervin Philips, out with a torn meniscus. Philips, one of the team's top playmakers, caught two TD passes from Dungey in the opener.
Former Syracuse coach Dick MacPherson was honored after the first quarter. During his 10-year tenure, MacPherson coached the Orange to one of just two undefeated seasons in school history - 11-0-1 in 1987 - and had two of the school's six double-digit win seasons.
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