It is this time of the year again in the CFL, the pink game to support breast cancer awareness has arrived, and the two teams for this Eastern matchup couldn’t be better. The Montreal Allouettes, in first place, against the surprising Toronto Argonauts, in second. The Al’s come into Toronto with an impressive record, they have won their last 8 of 10 games in Toronto, and 12 of their last 15 against the Argos all together.
The games haven’t been close either, only one of those Allouettes wins were from a touchdown or less margin.
The Opening drive to the Pink game belongs to the Argonauts, who start off with a 30 yard kickoff return. After an incompletion, Jackson, who is playing instead of Ray, who is out this week with his knee injury, hits Rambo for a gain of 15. After a poor run and a swatted pass courtesy of Shea Emry, Noel Prefontaine is called on for the punt, which gets a favorable bounce into the end zone for a single point. 1-0 Toronto to start the game off.
Hockey may be non-existent this year, but the scores are, as Prefontaine strikes again. With a little over 4 minutes left in the 1st quarter, he punts it into the end zone again for a single, making it 2-0 for the Argos.
Now it is Sean Whyte’s turn to get his team on the board, Montreal takes the ball back and the possession is carried over into the second quarter, where Toronto steps up and forces Whyte to punt it for his team into the end zone for the third singular point in the game, 2-1 Toronto now with 13 minutes left in the half.
On the ensuing drive, Toronto marches down the field, getting an extended drive after an Illegal contact penalty by DB Jerald Brown. After back to back first down connections to Barnes and then Durie, Gerald Riggs, who got his first touchdown last week against Saskatchewan, gets stuffed for no yards. Another 1st down pass from Jackson to Bradwell, gets Toronto a fresh set of downs. The first touchdown appears to have been scored when Owens catches it and runs it in for the score, but the play is reversed when Riggs is called for holding, reversing the call and making it 1st and 20 for the Argos. But not even two plays later, Jackson dumps it to Durie, who appears he is going to be tackled and not gain enough for the first down, shakes off a would be tackler and turns on the jets, cuts up through the middle and runs in for the score. In all, Durie gets a 24 yard scoring catch- 9-1 Argonauts.
After the teams trade possessions, Montreal gets the ball back and starts with a bang- or so it seemed. A 68 yard punt return by Bo Bowling was beautiful and stunning- but gets called back from a holding call on Lance Milton, making the Allouettes drive start inside their own 10 yard line. Calvillo hits Victor Anderson for 10, but on his next throw it is tipped up by a defensive lineman, and Marcus Ball intercepts the pass. However, his would be pick gets challenged and is reversed, denying Ball of an interception, the second time today that has happened for him.
Calvillo goes back to work after the interception scare, hitting the Canadian Eric Deslauriers way down the field for a 47 yard connection. After Jamel Richardson, who said he wanted the ball more prior to this game, gets the ball inside the 35 and a 15 yard Unnecessary Roughness call against the Argos, Whyte hits a 27 yard field goal to make it 9-7 Toronto at the half.
Before the start of the second half, Mark Trestman the Allouettes coach, announced London to be out for the game with a Knee injury.
With eight and a half minutes remaining in the third quarter, on a third and 6 punting situation, Noel Prefontaine does something that you rarely see anymore, a fake punt pass. It would have been successful, the receiver caught it over the first down marker, however the ball was stripped and marked incomplete, giving the Allouettes the ball back at midfield. Given this field advantage, Calvillo sets to work, connecting with Victor Anderson for 13 and then 6 yards. However on the third play of the drive the pass is deflected yet again from the Argos defensive line, the ninth time this season they have done this, second this game, causing Whyte to come out and hit a 37 yard field goal. This gives Montreal their first lead in 3 games, making it a 10-9 lead for the Allouettes.
But on the very next play, after Montreal opts to take the ball at their 35 yard line after the score, Calvillo connects with Jamel Richardson for a 75 yard touchdown pass. Richardson’s 48th Montreal Touchdown pass in his career, giving Montreal the lead back, 17-12 Montreal. That makes 446 career Touchdown passes for Calvillo, and extending his TD pass streak to 9 games.
After 7 minutes of scoreless final quarter action, Jackson tries to find his receiver, but Shea Emry once again is a factor, as he intercepts it and returns it 45 yards for the score. Emry has been a big factor this game with 2 sacks and an Pick Six.
The final score of the pink game was 24-12 Montreal, which sure pleased the 300+ fans from Montreal who took the train in to watch their team play.
Calvillo: 16/31, 255 YDS, TD, INT
Jennings: 10 Carries, 86 YDS
Jackson: 20/40, 239 YDS, TD, INT
Riggs: 5 Carries, 13 YDS.