Wake Forest football gets bowl eligible in shootout with Syracuse

(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /

Wake Forest football knocked off Syracuse in a game riddled with offensive records by outscoring the Orange 40-5 in the second half.

John Wolford racked up 499 yards by ground and air and six total touchdowns to lead the Wake Forest Demon Deacons to a 64-43 win over the Syracuse Orange. The road win made Wake Forest bowl eligible for the second consecutive year — their first back-to-back bowls since 2008. They also set a school record for yards in a game with 734, over 100 yards more than their next best total.

Wolford threw for 363 yards and three touchdowns. It was the third straight game in which he threw for over 300 yards. The senior also cracked the 100-yard rushing barrier for the first time in his career with 136 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Running back Matt Colburn set a personal best of his own with 237 yards rushing on 31 carries. Two of those touches ended with him in the end zone.

The receiving corps had three receivers go over 100 yards receiving on the day. Tight end Cam Serigne caught a school record three touchdown passes and had seven total catches for 119 yards. Junior wide receiver Tabari Hines led all receivers with nine catches for 124 yards. Sophomore Scotty Washington had seven catches for 113 yards.

Syracuse led by as many as 17 points in the first half without their starting quarterback, Eric Dungey. The Orange scored 17 points in the second quarter to tie and then take the lead. A field goal by Mike Weaver as time expired cut Wake Forest’s halftime deficit to 38-24.

The second half belonged to the Demon Deacons. They outscored Syracuse 40-5 in the final two quarters, including a 24-0 fourth quarter.

What’s Next

Wake Forest (6-4, 3-3 ACC) ends the season with a pair of games against its Tobacco Road rivals. Next week, the Deacons welcome NC State to Winston-Salem for a nightcap. They close the regular season with a game against their fellow private school, Duke.

Next: Army hands Blue Devils their sixth straight loss

Syracuse (4-6, 2-4) still has an outside shot of making a bowl game. It will take beating Heisman winner Lamar Jackson on his own turf and a scrappy Boston College team in the season finale.