Syracuse takes victory with strong first half


    By Stephenson Beck

    What could have been worse for BYU after Syracuse scored 21 points in the first quarter?

    Try 21 more points in the second quarter.

    Syracuse scored 42 first half points and cruised to a 42-14 victory over BYU Saturday at the Carrier Dome.

    To make matters worse, quarterback Bret Engemann dislocated his shoulder in the first half and will be out for the season. He will undergo surgery Monday, Oct. 2.

    The Orangemen scored six touchdowns on eight first half possessions.

    “Obviously we got smoked that first half,” said head coach LaVell Edwards. “I don’t have any explanation. That first half is probably a good a half as they’ve had here for years.”

    Syracuse’s first drive of the game set the tone.

    BYU’s defense stopped Syracuse on third down, and the Orangemen lined up for a 53-yard field goal.

    But the attempt was a fake, and quarterback Troy Nunes completed a 16-yard pass for a first down.

    Nunes would later score on a 1-yard run for the Orangemen’s first score. He completed 10 of 11 passes for 228 yards and two touchdowns.

    “I thought the fake field goal was a great play,” said Syracuse head coach Paul Pasqualoni. “(BYU) figured out the play, but Nunes made a great pass, and from there great things happened the rest of the game.”

    Syracuse running back James Mungro rushed for two touchdowns, including a 61-yard run in the first quarter.

    BYU’s defense shutdown Syracuse in the second half, but by then it was too late.

    Quarterback Charlie Peterson, who replaced Engemann in the first half, completed 18 of 29 passes for 206 yards. He also threw two touchdown passes to wide receiver Jonathan Pittman to account for BYU’s scoring.

    BYU’s running game was held to 21 total yards, including -8 yards in the first half.

    “This has happened to us a few times this season where we don’t have a good first half,” said quarterback Brandon Doman, who played the fourth quarter for the Cougars.

    Doman finished 6 of 9 for 66 yards and figures to receive more playing time with the loss of Engemann.

    The Cougars fell to 2-4 and next play Utah State Friday at Cougar Stadium.

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