Cato capped a 75-yard drive with a 28-yard scoring pass to Davonte Allen with 7:34 remaining for the Thundering Herd (4-5, 3-2 Conference USA) after three consecutive touchdowns by the Tigers (1-8, 1-4) had whittled a 31-7 deficit to three points.
With Memphis trailing 31-21, Tom Hornsey’s 61-yard pass to Bobby McCain on a fake punt put the Tigers at the Marshall 4. Jai Steib fumbled on a rush from the 2, but Jordan Devey was there to recover and score.
Kevin Grooms’ 28-yard run helped the Thundering Herd reach Memphis territory on their next possession, but the drive stalled before Cato found Allen for the score on a fourth-and-6 play.
Cato completed 34 of 44 passes, including 22 of 29 in the first half, and has thrown for 3,290 yards this season.