Eskimos grab last play­off spot with 19-6 win over B.C.

The Peterborough Examiner - - SPORTS - BRIAN SWANE

ED­MON­TON — It wasn’t the pret­ti­est vic­tory, but Ed­mon­ton Eskimos head coach Ja­son Maas will take it.

Shaquille Cooper rushed for 94 yards and a touch­down to help Ed­mon­ton beat the B.C. Lions, 19-6, on Satur­day night and clinch the Cana­dian Foot­ball League’s last re­main­ing play­off berth. The Eskimos im­proved to 8-8 af­ter win­ning for just the sec­ond time in their last seven out­ings, while the Lions drop to 5-11 af­ter see­ing their four-game win streak halted with B.C.’s first loss since Sept. 6.

“We’re in and that’s the most im­por­tant thing,” said Maas.

“I said at the be­gin­ning of the year our first goal is to get close and we checked that box, our sec­ond goal is to make the play­offs and we checked that one now.

“So it’s about get­ting healthy now and play­ing bet­ter foot­ball.”

The Lions were of­fi­cially elim­i­nated from post-sea­son con­tention with the loss at Com­mon­wealth Sta­dium on Satur­day night.

B.C. also lost quar­ter­back Mike Reilly, who leads the CFL in pass­ing yards, af­ter he was hurt early in the first quar­ter with what was re­vealed as a bro­ken left wrist.

Danny O’Brien took over un­der cen­tre for the vet­eran all­star and for­mer Eskimos QB, whose sea­son is likely over. Reilly was the lone CFL quar­ter­back to have made ev­ery start for his team this sea­son.

“It’s tough to see him go down,” said Maas, whose team won all three of its meet­ings with the Lions this sea­son.

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