Syracuse football shows cohesion in tuneup against Albany

Sep 18, 2021; Syracuse, New York, USA; Syracuse Orange running back Sean Tucker (34) runs with the ball into the end zone for a touchdown past Albany Great Danes linebacker Bobby Ambush (43) during the first half at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday afternoon, Albany did what they were paid to do: travel to Syracuse and lose a football game. The Orange (2-1) had their way with their in-state rivals throughout the game, rolling up 48 straight points as they blasted the Great Danes (0-3), 62-24.

The game footage serves as a personal highlight reel for Sean Tucker, as SU’s running back piled up five touchdowns in the game. Four of those scores came as part of Tucker’s 132 yards on the ground and the fifth on one of his two receptions for 116 yards.

Tucker’s first score was a pedestrian eight-yard run to open the scoring, which he followed with his first explosive play, racing 56 yards for another score and a 14-0 Syracuse lead shortly past the midpoint of the first quarter. The freshman back turned a 3rd-and-28 screen pass into a 72-yard touchdown in the second quarter, then added a 12-yard run less than a minute later. His fifth score was a 26-yard run that opened the third quarter scoring and finished his day.

Albany briefly threatened to get back into the game after falling into that 14-0 hole. The Danes got a field goal to get on the board, then an interception return for a touchdown 33 seconds later when Tommy DeVito’s pass went right through Trebor Pena’s hands and into the arms of Christian Lewis, who had a clear path to the end zone.

DeVito responded by connecting with Damien Alford two plays later for a picture-perfect 73-yard touchdown pass that flipped things back in SU’s direction. The junior quarterback played just one more series, netting a field goal, and finished the game with a stat line of 6-for-9 passing for 147 yards to with five rushes for 28 yards.

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Garrett Shrader also received extended action at quarterback and completed 11-of-15 passes for 190 yards with a touchdown and an interception to go with nine carries for 42 yards and two scores.

The two quarterbacks and Tucker led a 623-yard assault, 400 of them coming in the first half. That yardage was pretty evenly split with 337 yards coming via the pass and 286 coming on the ground.

The Syracuse defense held up their end of the bargain until allowing a pair of Albany scores late in the fourth quarter. The Orange racked up eight sacks in the game, three of them going to defensive end Cody Roscoe, as part of their 14 tackles for loss as a unit.

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About Jim Stechschulte 894 Articles
A 1996 graduate of Syracuse University, Jim has reported on Syracuse sports for the Syracuse University Alumni Club of Southern California on nearly a decade. He has also written a fantasy basketball column published by He currently resides in Syracuse.