Syracuse lost its upset bid against Cornell, dropping a 16-15 overtime decision after Hugh Kelleher’s sudden death goal 2:48 into the extra frame.
The goal capped a furious rally for the Big Red, which was down five after the first quarter, and 11-6 at halftime. Cornell stormed out of intermission, scoring seven of eight goals to take a brief 13-12 lead with 11:07 to go.
The Orange would respond, scoring three of the next four, with Tucker Dordevic’s goal with 1:45 left putting the Orange up 15-14. But that would be SU’s final goal of the night.
Cornell won the ensuing face-off, and out of a timeout, John Piatelli pulled Michael Long’s defender away long enough to free him for the equalizing goal with 24 seconds in regulation.
The Big Red won the face-off to start overtime, setting up Kelleher’s game-winning goal as the Big Red bench spilled on to the Carrier Dome field.
It was all Syracuse early, as the Orange used a balanced attack to take an early 7-2 lead, as six different players scored. Dordevic’s first goal of the game came with four minutes to go before half, and gave the upset-minded Orange its biggest lead of the night at 10-4.
Piatelli finished with six goals, while Billy Coyle contributed two of his three goals during Cornell’s second half run. Brendan Curry (4 goals) and Dordevic (3) led the Orange.
Syracuse is now in jeopardy of finishing with a losing record for the first time since 2007, and will need to win its final three games against No. 15 UNC, No. 6 Virginia and No. 10 Notre Dame to finish at .500. It will be the second time the Orange has played both Notre Dame and Virginia, losing the first games by a combined 42-17.
The Orange travel to North Carolina to play the Tar Heels on Saturday at 4 p.m., and ESPNU will handle television duties.