CFL Game Summary - Montreal at Calgary
(Saturday, June 28)
Final Score: Calgary 29, Montreal 8
Calgary, AB (SportsNetwork.com) - Bo Levi Mitchell threw for 313 yards and a
pair of touchdowns as he led the Calgary Stampeders to a 29-8 win over the
Montreal Alouettes in the season opener at McMahon Stadium.
Mitchell completed 16-of-25 passes, spreading the wealth among eight receivers
for Calgary (1-0).
Running back Jon Cornish carried the ball 14 times for 67 yards and a score
and also caught three passes for another 41 yards for the hosts.
This was the first time in 15 years that Montreal (0-1) began a season without
Anthony Calvillo under center after the star quarterback retired following the
2013 campaign. Troy Smith made the start for the Alouettes and was less than
impressive as he connected on 18-of-41 for 154 yards, was picked off once and
sacked four times.
Former NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson made his debut for Montreal and tallied
two catches for 20 yards in the setback.
With the victory Calgary, which was assessed a total of six major penalties on
the afternoon, has now won three straight and six of the last seven regular
season meetings against the Als.
This was the weakest offensive showing during the regular season for Montreal
since the team was blitzed by British Columbia in the 2011 finale (43-1).
The Stamps received the opening kick but failed to move the ball sufficiently,
leaving punter Rob Maver to pick up a single with a kick that reached the end
On their first play from scrimmage, the Als tried to jump-start the offense as
Smith went to Chad Johnson near midfield, but the pass fell incomplete.
Montreal was also forced to punt, but managed to retain possession after
punter Sean Whyte was roughed up on the play.
The opening series for the Alouettes was again extended due to a penalty, this
time for roughing the passer.
Charleston Hughes, who led the CFL with 18 sacks a year ago, came up with his
first of 2014 on Smith six minutes into the meeting. Pushed back, the Als
opted to attempt a field goal from 38 yards out, but Whyte's attempt missed to
Kicker Rene Paredes, who set a CFL record last season by converting 39
consecutive field goals, pushed the Calgary advantage to 4-0 with a 38-yard
effort with just under three minutes remaining in the first quarter.
The Stampeders added to their advantage moments later when Mitchell let fly
from inside his own end zone and found Maurice Price on the run near midfield,
the wide receiver then streaking to the end zone to complete the 102-yard TD
Johnson caught his first CFL pass with about five minutes remaining in the
first half and immediately earned some attention when he got in the face of
the defense. Shortly thereafter, Smith tossed his second interception of the
contest, but it was wiped out by yet another defensive penalty on the Stamps.
Calgary, which owned an 11-0 lead at the break, was given a short field to
start off the second half, partly due to a penalty at the end of the first
half, and capitalized with a 26-yard field goal by Paredes.
Both offenses continued to struggle though, with Maver adding another single
on an 88-yard punt with under five minutes remaining in the third frame.
With the quarter winding down, Montreal finally landed on the scoreboard,
thanks to a 50-yard single by Whyte. Heading into the fourth, Calgary owned a
15-1 advantage and had generated 290 yards of total offense, compared to just
103 for the Alouettes.
Calgary took the first possession of the final period and steadily moved the
ball down the field, culminating with an 18-yard rushing TD for Cornish after
taking a direct snap from center, bursting up the middle and into the end
Tempers flared a bit late in the meeting after Nik Lewis delivered a vicious
block on Montreal linebacker Marc-Olivier Brouillette. The Als defender was
able to leave under his own power, but that almost wasn't the case for Cornish
who was violently taken down by Kyries Hebert.
Initially, it appeared Cornish would leave the field in an ambulance, but he
too eventually walked off. Hebert was subsequently ejected for his rough play.
Capping off a drive that began at their own two-yard line, the Stampeders put
the ball into the end zone once again as Mitchell lofted a pass 16 yards to a
wide open Anthony Parker. With the PAT, the seven-play drive made the score
Montreal managed to score a touchdown with no time remaining on the clock
after Calgary was assessed yet another penalty, this time in the end zone as
time expired. Steven Lumbala bulled his way over the goal line in order to
make the score 29-8 once it was officially over.
Mitchell, the 2011 Walter Payton Award winner at Eastern Washington, had only
three previous starts in his career, all of them wins last season ... Cornish
was the 2013 CFL Most Outstanding Player and was also named the top Canadian a
season ago ... Chad Johnson registered 751 receptions, for 10,783 yards and 67
touchdowns during his NFL career.
06/28 21:40:45 ET
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