The Edmond Sun

November 6, 2012

Bronchos drop homecoming game

Bryan Trude
Special to The Sun

EDMOND — The University of Central Oklahoma Bronchos, looking to get their first winning streak under first year head coach Nick Bobeck, came into their homecoming game after breaking a road losing streak dating back to 2009. The Southern Baptist University Bearcats had other plans, downing the Bronchos 26-14 in front of a bustling homecoming crowd at Wantland Stadium on Saturday.

The Bearcats (2-8) were first to the board on a long field goal by sophomore John Colliver on SBU’s first possession. After an interception thrown by Bronchos quarterback Adrian Nelson, the defense stiffened for UCO (2-6), keeping the Bearcats out of the end zone in the first quarter.

SBU scored their first touchdown on a 14-yard pass from senior Dan Conners to junior Nyran Ross, giving the Bearcats a 10-0 lead. An 82-yard touchdown pass from Nelson to sophomore Christian Hood put the Bronchos on the board with a minute to go for the half, and a 10-7 halftime deficit.

A blocked field goal attempt by the Bearcats courtesy of UCO’s Herbert Byrd and caught by Sam Moses gave the Bronchos a much-needed momentum boost midway through the third. The ensuing 96-yard drive ended with a 38-yard touchdown run by star running back Joshua Birmingham, giving UCO the lead 14-10.  

The Bearcats pulled within one on a 22-yard Colliver field goal in the fourth, taking the lead on their next drive on a 74-yard run by freshman ViaVia Manuma. That gave SBU a 19-14 lead following a failed two-point conversion attempt. A series of Broncho penalties late in the fourth torpedoed any chance of a UCO comeback as SBU sealed the deal on a fake field goal touchdown pass to Brad Sundstrom by Colliver.

Nelson wound up going 13-of-28 passing with one touchdown and two interceptions for 180 yards. Birmingham lead the Broncho rushing attack, gaining 171 yards on 29 runs, including a touchdown. Hood led receivers with 110 yards on five catches. For the Bearcats, Connors went 34-of-49 passing for 262 yards and a touchdown, while Manuma led the ground game with 98 yards on seven carries and a touchdown.

UCO will close out their season next weekend at home, taking on intrastate rival Northeastern State at 1 p.m. Saturday for the President’s Cup. The Riverhawks, who joined the MIAA with UCO this year, have won the previous two meetings.