How Clemson held on to beat Syracuse, score first road win of 2021

·2 min read

Clemson picked up its first road win of the season with a 17-14 win over Syracuse on Friday night at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, New York.

The victory keeps Clemson (4-2, 3-1 ACC) in the running for a possible seventh consecutive conference title heading into the final stretch of the regular season.

Syracuse kicker Andre Szmyt missed a 48-yard field goal with 38 seconds in the game to seal the Clemson win.

Clemson was without a few key offensive pieces including center Hunter Rayburn, wide receiver E.J. Williams and tight end Braden Galloway. The Tigers had others step up.

Mason Trotter handled snapping duties and Joseph Ngata scored his first touchdown of the season. The junior California native got a foot down in the end zone and brought in a 19-yard pass from D.J. Uiagalelei to get the Tigers on the board first in the second quarter.

By the numbers

2 — For a second straight year, Clemson used Will Spiers on a trick play to convert on fourth down against Syracuse. After a six-yard run at home last year against the Orange, Spiers kept a Tigers’ drive alive in the second quarter with a 17-yard pass to Davis Allen.

The drive ended with Kobe Pace scoring on a two-yard run and Clemson taking a 14-7 lead into halftime.

5 — Clemson’s defense has forced a turnover in five of six games played this season. On Friday, it was Tyler Venables’ turn.

After Syracuse running back Sean Tucker got the Orange in the red zone on the team’s third drive of the game, Venables picked off one of Garrett Shrader’s passes to bring out Clemson’s offense with 1:03 left in the first quarter.

6 — As much as Clemson’s offense struggled, the group managed to build momentum at various points of the game. Uiagalelei had six passes for 10 or more yards in the contest and finished with 181 passing yards and a score to go along with 19 yards on eight carries.

Next Clemson game

Who: Clemson vs. Pitt

When: 3:30 p.m. Oct. 23

Where: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pa.

TV: ABC or ESPN

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