Late TD gives Stamps another win over Eskimos
RB Jon Cornish runs to game-winning score
Although it was familiar sight, Grant Shaw could hardly believe his own eyes.
The Eskimos kicker missed a last-minute field goal for the second straight game as the Calgary Stampeders won the Labour Day rematch in Edmonton 20-18 on Friday.
Shaw, who missed a 48-yard field goal in Monday's loss in Calgary, was lined up for a chance for redemption at Commonwealth Stadium, but missed again from 42 yards out with time expired.
"The nightmare continues," said Shaw, who was part of the return from Toronto in the Rickey Ray trade. "I felt good about the kick. I just pushed it a little bit right and unfortunately it hit the upright. I have to be better.
"It is not a good feeling right now. It feels terrible to let the team down. I can't believe this happened."
It was the third straight win for the Stampeders, who moved into a tie for first place with the B.C. Lions in the CFL's West Division at 6-4.
With both their victories on the week coming off missed last-second field goals by the Eskimos, the Stampeders were forced to admit they were a little fortunate.
"When stuff like that happens, it's by the grace of God," said Calgary QB Kevin Glenn. "We had the football gods on our side on that play. It was a hard-fought game on both sides. You have to give the credit for coming back and having a chance to kick to win. But at the same time, we fought hard too and stayed in the game and came from behind at the half."
Stamps running back Jon Cornish, who scored the winning touchdown with five minutes to play and had 185 yards rushing on the night, was relieved to see his huge 59-yard scoring play stand up.
"It's funny. You can go from being the hero to just another dude in one play," he said. "If they hit that field goal at the end, I had a good game, but we lost. It was just nice to contribute to the win. That's the CFL. You have games that come down to the wire like that. In both cases this week we lucked out."
Edmonton, with the two heartbreaking losses in a row, fell to third with a 5-5 record.
"I'm not happy," said Eskimos head coach Kavis Reed. "I'm not happy that we did not execute at the level that we are accustomed to executing at. I'm not happy that we did not take advantage of opportunities given to us. I'm not happy that we had the penalties. I'm not happy that we did not tackle well. I'm not happy."
The Stampeders had an impressive start with a touchdown on their first possession as Glenn passed 37 yards to Johnny Forzani for an early 7-0 lead.
Edmonton responded with a punt single on its first drive.
Calgary came flying back late in the opening quarter with a 50-yard passing play to Romby Bryant, but were forced to accept a 28-yard Rene Paredes field goal.
The Esks started the second quarter with a 22-yard Shaw field goal to cut Calgary's lead to 10-4.
Midway through the second quarter a pass interference call took the Stampeders down to the Edmonton two-yard line, but the Eskimo defence got the ball back on a Chris Thompson interception in the end zone.
The first half had a wild finish as the Eskimos bobbled a field goal snap with time expired and holder and third-string quarterback Matt Nichols passed to linebacker Corbin Sharun, who bounced off a pair of Stamps defenders to score a 35-yard touchdown. Edmonton took an 11-10 lead into the dressing room at the half.
Calgary got down to the Edmonton 15 with two minutes to go in the third quarter and looked about to regain the lead, but once again Glenn was picked off in the end zone by Thompson, who took the ball out to the 29.
The Stampeders were able to inch back in front early in the third quarter on a 13-yard Paredes field goal.
Calgary padded their lead with five minutes remaining as Cornish made a great cutback and ran 59 yards to put the Stamps ahead 20-11.
The Eskimos came back with a long drive of their own to close to within two points. Veteran quarterback Kerry Joseph hit Fred Stamps with a 22-yard touchdown pass with just under three minutes to play.
Joseph, who has not won a start in eight tries dating back to 2009, threw 275 yards in the game.
Glenn was 19-for-30 with 254 yards, one touchdown pass and two interceptions.
Edmonton got the ball back near midfield with just over a minute to play and pushed to the Calgary 35 on a third and 18 gamble that was caught for 31 yards by Marcus Henry.
Shaw, who missed a 48-yarder in the loss to Calgary, came out to try and give Edmonton the win, but once again missed the mark.
Coach Reed said the team will simply have to pick up the pieces right now.
"This team will not quit," he said. "They are not built that way. There is disappointment, but this football team has character and we are not going to surrender the season. Next week is a new season in itself."
The Stampeders return home to face Winnipeg next Friday, while the Eskimos hit the road to play the Ticats in Hamilton next Saturday.