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September 14, 2013WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - ULM withstood a late rally by Wake Forest, stopping the Demon Deacons on a two-point conversion attempt with four seconds remaining to earn a 21-19 victory at BB&T Field in Winston-Salem, N.C., on Saturday afternoon.
With the win, the Warhawks improve to 2-1 on the season. Wake Forest falls to 1-2 following the loss.
Kolton Browning completed a career-high 43 passes on 68 attempts, also a career-high. The senior threw for 315 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions. Jyruss Edwards added 61 rushing yards on 17 carries.
Both Tavarese Maye (11 for 78 yards) and Je'Ron Hamm (10 for 84 yards) reached double-digit receptions in the contest. Browning's touchdowns went to Maye, Kenzee Jackson and Harley Scioneaux.
For the Demon Deacons, Tanner Price led the way in the air, going 28-of-47 for 310 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Campanaro matched the ACC record for receptions in a game, hauling in 16 grabs for 177 yards.
ULM opened the game with a dominant drive, converting four third-down opportunities as well as a critical fourth-down on the scoring play to take an early 7-0 lead. Browning led the way for the Warhawks with his arm, completing five of his eight passes for 49 yards and adding an additional 13 yards on the ground. The touchdown came off Browning's arm to an uncovered Scioneaux in the middle of the end zone for the score.
After trading scoreless drives during the middle of the quarter, the Deacons struck back with a big passing play from Price to Orville Reynolds. The experienced senior found reliable receiver Campanaro for a 12-yard gain to the Wake Forest 35, then found Reynolds open behind the ULM secondary for the 65-yard score to knot the game at 7-7.
Wake Forest grabbed its first lead of the game on a Chad Hedlund field goal early in the second quarter. The Demon Deacons had excellent field position to begin the drive, starting on the Warhawks' 48 after a short Justin Manton punt. Despite the short field, ULM's defense held strong and stopped Wake Forest at the 11-yard lead, forcing the Deacons to settle for three points and the 10-7 advantage.
Browning placed his name at the top of the ULM record books with a pass to Hamm with 9:27 remaining in the second quarter. The senior passed Steven Jyles to claim the top spot, as the connection gave him 796 for his career. Later in the quarter, Browning also collected his 800th completion on a pass to Edwards.
Despite a pair of interceptions from Browning, the defense refused to allow Wake Forest to capitalize on its opportunities, shutting down two Demon Deacons drives that began on short fields in the middle of the quarter.
Late in the quarter, ULM struck again to retake the lead with another sustained drive. Buoyed by a running into the kicker penalty, the Warhawks drove 81 yards with 14 plays, capped off by a five-yard touchdown pass from Browning to Jackson down the middle. Another big pass to Maye, good for 24 yards, helped to set up the scoring play.
Wake Forest responded with another long drive of its own to close out the first half. Price hit Jonathan Williams for six yards and Campanaro three times for 47 yards to drive the Deacons down the field. With the clock running down, however, Wake had to settle for a field goal by Hedlund as time expired, making it a 14-13 contest heading into the locker room.
ULM came out of the halftime break on fire, exploding for a 74-yard drive to build on the lead. Browning led the drive through the air, but Edwards and Monterrell Washington also got going in the ground attack, rushing for 44 yards on four carries. Washington's long run of 22 yards to the Wake Forest 13-yard line put ULM in position to score, and two consecutive tosses to Maye, including the 9-yard touchdown, put the Warhawks ahead 21-13.
A muffed punt by Campanaro set ULM up on the six-yard line of the Deacons, but the squad could not take advantage of the mistake. On fourth down, the field goal team came out, but a bad snap forced Manton to throw the ball away, resulting in a turnover on downs.
Early in the fourth quarter, the Warhawks had another chance to add to the lead. A 14-play drive brought ULM down to Wake Forest's seven-yard line, but Manton hit the left upright on a field goal attempt to keep the score 21-13 in favor of the Warhawks.
The Demon Deacons made one final rally with time running out. Price put together a strong drive behind several key throws, hitting Campanaro four times for 58 yards to move the ball down the field quickly. To cap the drive, he found Reynolds in the back of the end zone, who made an excellent catch by getting one foot down on the 23-yard score. Needing two points to tie the game, they attempted to go for two, but the Warhawks' defense held and secured the victory.
The Warhawks will return to action next Saturday afternoon at No. 22 Baylor in Waco, Texas. Kickoff is currently scheduled for 3:00 p.m. and the contest will be carried on Fox Sports 1.