By JOEDY McCREARY
The Associated Press
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Now that Syracuse has climbed back into the national rankings, the Orange want to stay there.
The 22nd-ranked Orange beat Wake Forest 41-24 on Saturday, with Eric Dungey rushing for 119 yards and a touchdown and Jarveon Howard adding two scores.
Dungey — whose average of 294.1 total yards per game ranks second in the ACC — was 23 of 35 for 157 yards and also ran for a 26-yard score to help the Orange (7-2, 4-2, No. 19 CFP) win their first game as a Top 25 team since the Dwight Freeney days in 2001.
“Can’t say enough about what [the seniors have] done to change this culture … and give us an opportunity to do greater things in the future,” coach Dino Babers said. “Whatever happens, they’re going to be known as the class that got this thing turned around and headed in the right direction.”
Moe Neal added an 8-yard score, Chris Elmore had a 5-yard TD run and Andre Szmyt kicked two field goals for Syracuse, which earned its first conference road victory in more than two years.
“We finally got that monkey off our back,” Babers said.
Sam Hartman was 21 of 37 for 275 yards for the Demon Deacons (4-5, 1-4) with two touchdown passes. His 8-yarder to Greg Dortch pulled them to 35-24 with 3:38 left in the third quarter.
But after Wake Forest forced a stop, Hartman fumbled at his own 34 and Syracuse turned that takeaway into Szmyt’s 28-yard field goal that put Orange up by 14 with 11:55 left.
Cade Carney had a 2-yard touchdown run and Nick Sciba kicked a 22-yard field goal to give Wake Forest an early 10-0 lead.