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Liberty knocks off Syracuse 38-21 for 1st win over ACC opponent

Liberty outgained Syracuse, 520-308.

The Flames Football team plays Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on October 17, 2020. (Photo by Isaac Apon)
The Flames Football team plays Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on October 17, 2020. (Photo by Isaac Apon) (Isaac Apon)

Liberty earned its first-ever win over an ACC opponent, rolling to a 38-21 victory at Syracuse, Saturday at the Carrier Dome.

One year after rushing for -4 yards in a 24-0 season-opening loss to then No. 22 Syracuse, Liberty registered 338 yards on the ground in today’s historic win. Liberty came into the game ranking seventh in the nation in rushing yards per game (250.8), while Syracuse allowed 237.5 rushing yards per contest.

With the victory, Liberty improves to 5-0 for the first time since opening the 2008 season with six straight wins. The Flames pushed their winning streak to seven games, their longest since a program-record 11-game winning streak spanning Oct. 20, 2007 through Oct. 11, 2008.

The Flames Football team plays Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on October 17, 2020. (Photo by Isaac Apon)
The Flames Football team plays Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on October 17, 2020. (Photo by Isaac Apon) (Isaac Apon)

Shedro Louis had a breakout game for Liberty, rushing for 170 yards on 10 carries, scoring touchdown runs of 75 and 52 yards. Peytton Pickett rushed 23 times for 115 yards and a score, giving Liberty two 100-yard rushers in a game for the first time since the season opener at Western Kentucky. Malik Willis passed for 182 yards (16-for-20) and a touchdown while adding 58 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

Syracuse’s Rex Culpepper passed for 211 yards, three touchdowns and one interception, while Sean Tucker rushed for 111 yards on 21 carries.

For the game, Liberty outgained Syracuse, 520-308. Syracuse led the nation with 14 takeaways coming in, and the Orange won the turnover battle, 2-1. However, Liberty scored seven points off of its lone takeaway and Syracuse came up empty on two tries after turnovers.