Stampeders stomp Tiger-Cats for 1st home win
After running for a three-yard touchdown, Jon Cornish breathed a sigh of relief.
Cornish's touchdown helped seal a 32-20 win for the Calgary Stampeders over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Saturday night, their first home victory of the season.
The Stampeders (4-2) trailed the Ticats 20-13 at half time before rallying in front of 29,307 fans at McMahon Stadium.
"It was a big deal because the fans come out and they support us every game," Cornish said. "We had almost 30,000 people out tonight. Losing at home is not a fun feeling so coming out and contributing to the win, that's a big deal for me. It's something that I'm always happy to do for this team."
Cornish also commended fellow Calgary running back Joffrey Reynolds for urging him to get into the game late in the fourth quarter.
"He really hooked me up on that last touch because it was his rotation," said Cornish, who finished with 19 rushing yards on four carries and 44 more yards on two receptions. "He let me have that last touchdown."
Reynolds, who scored on a one-yard plunge into the end zone in the third quarter, said he had his bell rung on the previous play and was happy to let Cornish take his turn out on the field.
"On the play before I had hit the ground pretty hard," said Reynolds, who finished with 41 yards rushing on 10 carries and 47 more yards on four receptions. "I was kind of seeing stars a little bit. Jon's very capable. We have a good working relationship. He understands when I want the ball. He's a young guy and he wants to get some balls thrown his way too."
Calgary quarterback Henry Burris praised both Cornish and Reynolds for their willingness to take their turns on the field.
"Whether it was the run or the pass, Cornish and Joffrey were effective in many ways," said Burris, who completed 27-of-39 passes for 341 yards to move past Tom Clements and into eighth spot all-time in CFL passing. "When it was time to run, those boys pounded it up in there and got some very important yards for us."
Larry Taylor caught a touchdown pass in the first quarter, Rene Paredes kicked three field goals and a single, while Burke Dales added a single for the Stamps.
Dave Stala caught a touchdown pass for the Ticats (3-3), whose winning streak ended at three games.
"We came out flat in the second half," Stala said. "Our offence looked dead, our whole team looked dead. We didn't put anything up. We've got to help out our defence and score some more points."
Avon Cobourne had a rushing touchdown, while Justin Medlock kicked a pair of field goals.
Hamilton quarterback Kevin Glenn, who went 20-for-34 for 211 yards, referred to the setback as very frustrating.
"Our defence pretty much gave us a chance all the way to the end until they scored that last touchdown," Glenn said. "We should have taken advantage of some of the opportunities that were given to us and we didn't, but you've still got to give them credit because they won the game.
"It's frustrating. I don't necessarily think it's a setback, it's just something we can learn from."
On Calgary's first possession, Burris engineered a five-play, 75-yard drive culminating in a 25-yard touchdown pass to Taylor.
After Medlock connected on an impressive 52-yard field goal, Burris marched the Stamps into scoring territory once again and appeared to toss a 28-yard touchdown pass to Jabari Arthur. Hamilton coach Marcel Bellefeuille threw his challenge flag and the play was subsequently overturned forcing Paredes to kick a 35-yard field goal to put the Stamps up 10-3.
Stala then capped off a six-play, 75-yard drive for Hamilton by catching a seven-yard pass from Glenn in the end zone to tie the contest.
Early in the third quarter, Glenn marched the Ticats on an eight-play, 80-yard drive that was capped off by a six-yard TD run by Cobourne.
After Paredes kicked a 21-yard field goal, Medlock responded with a 42-yarder as time wound down in the half to give Hamilton a 20-13 lead.
At 5:32 of the third quarter, Reynolds plunged into the end zone from one-yard out to cap off a seven-play, 74-yard Calgary drive to tie up the contest.
The Stamps then took a 24-20 lead after Dales booted a 72-yard single and Paredes kicked a 35-yard field goal.
Paredes added a single in the fourth quarter before Cornish ran for his TD to round out the scoring.
"The offensive line came off and blew those guys off into the end zone and Cornish just found a hole and ran it behind the guys," Burris said.