CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Aaron Bailey passed for three touchdowns, ran for another, and Northern Iowa handled Southern Illinois 42-21 in the Missouri Valley Conference opener for both teams on Saturday.
Bailey finished 11 of 18 for 186 yards and no interceptions with 98 yards on the ground on 20 carries.
Northern Iowa (2-2) took a 14-0 first-quarter lead on a 4-yard run by Tyvis Smith and Bailey's 7-yard run. In the second quarter, Bailey connected with Daurice Fountain on touchdown passes of 20 and 18 yards, and Malcolm Washington returned an interception 43 yards just before halftime to make it 35-14 at intermission.
Fountain's third touchdown reception - an 8-yard catch at the start of the fourth quarter - extended the lead to 42-21. Fountain had five catches for 89 yards.
Josh Straughan led Southern Illinois (2-2) with 307 yards on 25-of-35 passing with three touchdowns, but also threw two interceptions.