MICHAEL REILLY THROWN 308 METERS AND A PAIR OF TOUCHES IN BC VICTORY OVER MONTREAL SATURDAY NIGHT. PHOTO: PETER MCCABE / CFL.CA
Michael Reilly’s two touchdowns and 308 passing yards were the deciding factors in the BC Lions’ 27-18 victory over the Montreal Alouettes.
In Khari Jones ‘absence, Andre Boldu built on his roots as a running back as William Stanback and Vernon Adams were the star players in the Alouettes’ offense as they racked up 183 rushing yards. In the air, Adams threw for 270 yards.
The British Columbia defense added to its reputation as a ball peddler by knocking out Adams twice in the day; once by TJ Lee and once by Bo Lokombo. In addition to interceptions, BC managed to keep Adams from connecting with his receivers as their 13 knockdowns tied the all-time record in one game.
On special teams, an area Montreal has been emphasizing throughout the training week, David CÃ´tÃ© was as reliable as he could get when called upon, with 6/6 on the night, his more long coming from 48 yards. Plus, Al’s cover team was excellent as they limited the Lions to just 22 yards on the return night.
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Building on their dominant win over the Ottawa REDBLACKS last week, the Lions’ offense picked up where it left off. During their first practice, Reilly and Lucky Whitehead kicked off the Lions offense as the two connected multiple times while walking the field.
When stopped and faced with a third down situation, Nathan Rourke stepped in for the Lions short distance package. After the snap, Rourke kept it to himself and bounced off the left tackle to break a 17-yard run, bringing the Lions to the Montreal two-yard line. James Butler would end the Lions’ run with a touchdown after reclaiming the field on a seeded option read for a two-meter dive the Lions set early.
Seeking to react, the Alouettes rode the field the same way, but it was the talents of Adams and Stanback that pushed the Alouettes into the red zone. Following an incomplete pass to Eugene Lewis, Adams was knocked out in the end zone by Lee who abruptly ended a menacing attack from the Als.
The Alouettes would find themselves on the good side of luck not once, but twice early in the second quarter.
Following a mismanaged punt by Mario Alford, who had the ball removed during a punt return and a near-interception by the Lion secondary, the Alouettes settled in and returned to their racing game. In doing so, the Alouettes were able to move the ball with ease as they made their way to the C’s 28-yard line.
It would only take a few seconds for BC to react as after the kickoff and starting on his own 35-yard line, Reilly rigged the transfer, drawing the Alouettes’ defense and found Whitehead in stride in the secondary for a 75-yard touchdown. .
CÃ´tÃ© would pull off his second field goal through the uprights at 43 yards only to be matched by Jimmy Camacho to preserve the Lions’ 17-6 lead.
Seeking to reduce the Lions’ lead before halftime, a combination of Adams completes, scrambles and Stanback precipitation allowed Montreal to make their way to Colombia’s four-yard line. British. After the ball slipped through Lewis ‘hands, Cote would be called up again which was good on his third attempt of the day, which wiped out the Alouettes’ double-digit deficit.
CÃ´tÃ© would make his fourth attempt at 49 yards and his fifth at 26 on back-to-back Als possessions to regain the Lions lead, making it a two-point game.
The majority of the third and fourth quarters would see the action hiatus from the offensive fireworks that fans were treated to earlier. In its place, defenses would take over, as several doubles and outs generated by both teams would mean fans would have to wait until midway through the fourth quarter. With just over eight minutes to go with Reilly connected to Keon Hatcher to regain the sizable lead the Lions held earlier.
After a stalled practice, Camacho scored one final field goal to give the Lions the 27-18 victory.
The next stop for the Alouettes will be a trip to Toronto where they will face the Argonauts for the first game of a Friday Night Football doubles schedule. British Columbia will follow at 10:30 p.m. ET as they return to BC Place and host the Saskatchewan Roughriders.