BLOOMINGTON — Urbana built a 14-point lead in the third quarter and held off a late rally by previously undefeated Bloomington to prevail 30-22 Friday night in Big 12 football action.
The Tigers (2-1) went ahead 28-16 on a 6-yard touchdown run by quarterback Cameron Mammen with 5:04 left in the third quarter. When Mammen followed with a two-point conversion run, the Purple Raiders were in a two-TD hole.
"He's my guy," Urbana coach Nathan Watson said of his veteran QB. "He's been with me all four years. He played the first game I coached. I feel like his senior year he's really starting to bloom and get better and better."
Bloomington cut the margin to 30-22 with 5:57 left on a 1-yard scoring run by quarterback Jake Romani. The TD capped a 98-yard drive in less than two minutes, fueled by tailback Emerson Evans' 60-yard run. However, a two-point conversion run failed.
The Purple Raiders (2-1) then forced a punt, getting the ball back on their own 27-yard line with 3:36 left. Bloomington marched to the Urbana 35, but the drive stalled there when Romani's fourth-and-9 pass fell incomplete with 1:52 remaining.
With the Purple Raiders out of timeouts, the Tigers ran out the clock to clinch their second win in as many years against Bloomington.
"I'm not going to lie; I was nervous," Watson said. "I'm glad we stopped that two-point conversion. At least we knew if we went there we had overtime.
"I've been following the paper. I knew what they were capable of. We did talk about it all week about playing four quarters. Bloomington is well coached and I knew they were going to play until the very end."
The Tigers outgained the Purple Raiders 429-232. Urbana's Kenny Patton rushed for 134 yards and Mammen added 123 on the ground.
Mammen also was 10 of 20 through the air for 149 yards. Tanner Russell caught three of his passes for 71 yards. Devon Williams added five receptions for 48 yards.