TIGER-CATS’ STAR RECEIVER BURNS ARGONAUTS
TORONTO — There was fight, effort and a compete level, but once again the Argos fell short for reasons that have plagued this year’s edition almost from opening week.
In virtually all three phases, there is some dimension lacking, a piece here, a few pieces there that have prevented the Argos from breaking through and mounting some kind of roll.
At no point this season, which mercifully has three games left, have the Argos played a complete game and Friday night would be no exception.
The fact the visiting Ticats would come to town and beat the Argos for the third time this season shouldn’t come as a surprise, not with superior quarterback from Jeremiah Masoli, two bigtime playmakers on offence in Brandon Banks and Luke Tasker — who combined for four touchdown catches, three from Tasker — a more opportunistic and aggressive defence with better schemes.
It was close early, but eventually the Ticats pulled away in the third quarter en route to a 34-20 win.
The announced crowd was 14,184 on a cold, wet night at BMO Field when some 18,000 tickets were sold.
Needless to say, there’s work to do, a lot it should be noted, with the Argos, on and off the field, as the team dropped its seventh straight to fall to 3-12.
All things considered it was a decent opening half as the Ticats and Argos began the night by engineering field goal drives.
There were no punts in the opening quarter on a night when the Argos had nothing to play for, while the Ticats were looking to sweep a rival having already beaten the Argos twice.
It wasn’t bad except for a bad interference call to Argos defensive back Ronnie Yell in the second quarter when he seemed to provide solid coverage on Banks.
The 30-yard penalty did allow the Ticats to score their second touchdown to cap off an 82-yard, seven-play drive.
With James Franklin back as the Argos’ starting quarterback, the team did try to go deep.
On one throw into the wind, Franklin had S.J. Green open, but needed to get the ball in front of his target. But his attempt was more of a back-shoulder throw as Delvin Breaux recorded a knockdown.
Duron Carter was used more in the slot rather than at wideout and there were moments when the Argos’ offence functioned well.
Mind you, there was a time count call and three openinghalf sacks that didn’t help.
After matching Hamilton’s field goal drive, the Argos responded when the Ticats manufactured a touchdown drive in the opening quarter, which ended with a Tasker scoring reception.
Toronto mounted its own drive capped off by Brandon Burks’ first-career touchdown in the CFL in his second start at running back.
For the first time, the
Argos dressed American kicker Drew Brown, who converted on his first field goal attempt.
By halftime, the Tabbies were leading, 18-10, a late first-half punt single conceded by Carter when he should have fielded the ball and run upfield with the clock winding down, in many ways a bonus point for the visitors.
Once again, Masoli was making plays, only this time the Argos weren’t as vulnerable in yielding big plays.
On Banks’ touchdown reception, the man known as Speedy B ran head first into the padding of the goal post, but held on to the football and dutifully presented it to his kid. Following the Banks score, the Argos were forced to punt it.
On the return, Ticats’ Frankie Williams used his speed along the sideline to run 90 yards and into the end zone, but it was called back on a Hamilton penalty.