Argonauts win 35-22 in Toronto
The Toronto Argonauts hoisted the Grey Cup as they out-muscled the Calgary Stampeders in a 35-22 win in front of a hometown crowd.
The 100th Grey Cup was a game full of little victories. Absent were the long bombs and gravity defying catches. Instead, spectators saw a physical short game, with both teams muscling for every yard.
The Rogers Centre in Toronto was sold out for the historic tilt between the Stampeders and the Argonauts. Both finished second in their respective divisions and had to win two playoff games to reach the finals.
Calgary quarterback Kevin Glenn never really hit his stride and the offensive unit did not manage to score a touchdown until the fourth quarter. The Argonauts controlled the game from beginning to end and never gave Calgary a chance to open up their offence.
Photo by Max Shilleto
On the Argonauts’ side of the field, quarterback Ricky Ray was consistently able to find the open man and played a major part in Toronto cracking the game wide open early on.
The first half was largely dominated by the Argos. Toronto fumbled out of the gate, with Ray throwing an interception on the very first play of the game. This was not a hint of things to come, as the Argonauts came back and opened the scoring in the first quarter with a short touchdown pass from Ray to Chad Owens. The play originated with Calgary botching a handoff, which led to an Argonaut recovery. Toronto would not look back and held on to the lead for the remainder of the game.
Calgary responded on the next play with a 30-yard field goal. The first quarter ended with Toronto leading 7-3.
Toronto rode their momentum into the second quarter with Pacino Horne scoring a touchdown on a 25-yard interception return only 16 seconds into the quarter. Toronto added a field goal a few minutes later to bring the tally to 17-3.
The Stamps offence showed a spark of life on a 61-yard play to Nik Lewis, but the drive ultimately ended with a field goal. The Toronto offence, proving difficult to handle for Calgary, closed out the quarter with another touchdown, giving the Argos a 24-6 lead going into half time.
Calgary started off the scoring in the third with a 10-play drive culminating in a 27-yard field goal. Toronto fought back with a flurry of quick first-down plays and responded with a field goal of their own, bringing the score to 27-9.
Photo by Max Shilleto
Calgary’s offensive woes continued on the ensuing play when Larry Taylor’s touchdown on a punt return was called back due to a holding penalty. Calgary picked up a safety at the end of the quarter to bring the score to 27-11 for the Argonauts.
Calgary managed to add another field goal on a play driven by a 40-yard Toronto penalty to kick off the final quarter, but the Argos defence continued to hold strong and shut the Stamps down for most of the final quarter.
The Stampeders’ frustration culminated in a 30-yard penalty that led to an Andre Durie touchdown, adding to the Argonauts’ lead. A few minutes later, Toronto added a single to make the score 35-14.
With only a few minutes remaining, Calgary called in the back-up quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell. With only 20 seconds left on the clock, Mitchell connected with Maurice Price for a touchdown. Connecting again with Price on the two-point conversion allowed the Stampeders to bring the score to 35-22.
Argonauts running back Chad Kackert, who finished the game with 195 yards, was named the game’s MVP.
The first Grey Cup game, which was played almost 103 years ago in Rosedale Park in Toronto, saw the University of Toronto defeating Toronto Parkdale by a score of 26-6. Ninety-nine Grey Cup games later, in a fitting ending, Toronto brought the championship back to where it started.
Where do you think the Stamps went wrong? Please post your thoughts below.