The Montreal Alouettes had a good opportunity ahead of them on Friday night at Percival-Molson Stadium with a chance to reach the tiebreak against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. The local favorites won the third game of the season between the two teams, a trench warfare that ended 23-16.
That second win over the Ti-Cats (4-10) gave the Sparrows (6-7) a head start on their East Section rivals in the event of a tie in the East Section table. It’s also a morale-boosting win as Danny Maciocia’s side didn’t win after a week’s absence in 2022.
“If I go with a baseball analogy, I can say that with a game in hand we’re a game and a half ahead. We’re aiming for a two-team race in the next few weeks, but we still have a lot to do. It’s a great win, we’re happy,” said the interim head coach after the game.
The Toronto Argonauts (7-5) are still ahead of the Alouettes in the standings, but the two opposing teams will meet twice before the end of the regular season.
Lewis is having fun
The “Als” were able to neutralize the Tiger-Cats several times in front of the number zone and vice versa, so that the touchdowns were not numerous. Receiver Eugene Lewis was the only majors writer on the Montreal side. He had two, including the one at nine yards that gave the Alouettes priority when they were 16-15 behind.
“Trev threw a whole ball. We’ve been playing this game for the past few weeks. I’ve been doing this since college, so I felt really comfortable,” Lewis said of his run to the pay-zone corner.
The attack then went there at calculated risk by opting for the two-point conversion. Reggie White Jr. took over the baton from Trevor Harris at 23-16.
On his seventh touchdown of the season, Lewis hit the 1,000-yard plateau in a second CHL season.
“That is always the standard that a receiver has to achieve. I personally think I could have been there a few games earlier,” he said.
A very long step
After a first quarter that will not go down in history, Dane Evans started for the Tiger-Cats. The quarterback found several of his loose receivers, including Tim White at 38 yards, to move the field up. Wes Hills completed the offensive drive with a four-yard run into the end zone.
Evans couldn’t do as well as last week when the Tiger-Cats defeated the mighty Winnipeg Blue Bombers by five touchdowns. With 288 aerial yards on 22 passes, he didn’t have a bad game.
Despite hitting the post on a one-point conversion, kicker David Côté was instrumental in scoring three field goals. His longest of the game, 51 yards, was also the longest of his career. It is also the Alouettes’ first 50-yard field goal since Boris Bede’s on June 14, 2019.
A sad result
It was a cold evening at Percival Molson Stadium and some spectators tried everything to warm up. With the stadium in silence due to Rodney Randall Jr.’s injury, a fight broke out behind the Tiger Cats bench. Security quickly brought the situation under control and Randall was forced to leave the meeting on a stretcher, his neck well immobilized.
“I had stomach pain. I think everyone on the sidelines wasn’t good to see what happened. […] I’ll text later to hear from him,” Maciocia said.
The Alouettes play their next game next Saturday against the Elks in Edmonton.
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