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COLLEGE FOOTBALL : East Roundup : Little Something Extra in Final Seconds Keeps Syracuse Perfect, 32-31

November 22, 1987|From Times Wire Services

Don McPherson lobbed a 17-yard touchdown pass to Pat Kelly with 10 seconds left and Michael Owens ran for the two-point conversion Saturday night at Syracuse, N.Y., enabling undefeated and sixth-ranked Syracuse to beat West Virginia, 32-31.

Syracuse (11-0), which accepted an invitation to the Sugar Bowl before the game, scored 22 points in the fourth quarter to complete its first undefeated season since its 1959 national championship season. The 11 victories are a school record.

"I'm just completely numb right now. I can't even recall what happened on that last drive," McPherson said.

"I can't describe the feeling," Kelly said. "But I was thinking about that we needed two points to win the game. I was happy Don threw the ball perfectly. But I was thinking about the two points."

West Virginia (6-5) is hoping for a bid to the Independence Bowl.

Undra Johnson raced 10 yards for a touchdown with 1:32 left to move West Virginia ahead, 31-24. The Orangemen responded with a 74-yard, 7-play drive.

McPherson completed 15 of 28 passes for 246 yards but also threw 4 interceptions. Owens carried 10 times for 72 yards and had 2 receptions for 71 yards.

Daryl Johnston of Syracuse ran 19 yards for a touchdown with 5:34 left to tie the score, 24-24.

West Virginia quarterback Major Harris scored from 3 yards with 10:06 remaining to put the Mountaineers ahead, 24-17.

Harvard 14, Yale 10--Tony Hinz ran for 161 yards and scored 2 touchdowns and the Crimson beat the Bulldogs at New Haven, Conn., to win the Ivy League championship.

Hinz ran for a 57-yard touchdown in the first half and caught a 19-yard pass from Tom Yohe for the winning touchdown in the third quarter as Harvard (8-2 overall, 6-1 in league) won the Ivy title for the first time since 1982, when it shared the crown with Pennsylvania and Dartmouth.

It was Harvard's first outright title since 1975.

Yale (7-3, 5-2) had a last chance but fullback Troy Jenkins fumbled the ball away at the Harvard 33 with 1:30 left.

Pittsburgh 28, Kent State 5--Craig Heyward rushed for 259 yards and 3 touchdowns on a snow-covered field to lead the Panthers past the Golden Flashes at Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh (8-3) will play in the Bluebonnet Bowl.

Heyward, the nation's leading rusher, became the seventh running back in National Collegiate Athletic Assn. history to rush for at least 100 yards in every regular-season game over an 11-game season. The last to do it was Mike Rozier at Nebraska in 1983. Pitt's Tony Dorsett was the first to accomplish it, in 1976.

Penn 49, Dartmouth 7--Chris Flynn ran for 194 yards and 5 touchdowns as the Quakers scored four of the first five times they had the ball to beat the Big Green at Philadelphia.

Penn (4-6, 3-4) finished with a losing season for the first time since 1981. Dartmouth (2-8, 1-6) scored on the last play of the first half when Mark Johnson hit Craig Morton with an 11-yard pass.

Princeton 23, Cornell 6--Dean Cain intercepted three passes, and Vince Avallone intercepted two and ran one back for a touchdown as the Tigers picked off seven in all and beat the Big Red at Princeton, N.J.

Judd Garrett scored on runs of one and seven yards for Princeton (6-4, 4-3). Cornell went 5-5, 4-3.

Rutgers 17, Temple 14--Mike Botti and Curtis Stephens ran for touchdowns as the Scarlet Knights held off the Owls at Philadelphia.

Rutgers (6-5) took advantage of six turnovers and handed Temple (3-8) its seventh straight defeat.

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