Alouettes trounce lacklustre Argos

The Montreal Alouettes didn't need an offensive explosion to dispose of the hapless Toronto Argonauts Thursday night at Percival Molson Stadium.

The Montreal Alouettes didn't need an offensive explosion to dispose of the hapless Toronto Argonauts Thursday night at Percival Molson Stadium.

That's because the anemic Toronto offence was no match for the stout Alouette defence.

Montreal defenders harassed quarterback Spergon Wynn throughout the game as the
Alouettes thumped the Argonauts 31-7.

The win keeps Montreal perfect on the season with a 7-0 record, while the Argonauts drop to a dismal 2-5 mark.

Running back Robert Edwards led Montreal's attack with two touchdowns, while kicker Damon Duval added five field goals.

Edwards rushed for 138 yards and kept Toronto's defence off-balance with consistent power runs up the middle.

Toronto was playing without starting quarterback Damon Allen, who is still nursing a broken middle finger on his throwing hand.

Allen missed

Allen missed the Argos' first five games but returned to action last weekend against the B.C. Lions in a 28-8 loss. The 43-year-old veteran pivot was clearly rusty, tossing three interceptions in a frustrating game.

''I think if I'd asked him to play, he would have tried, but he couldn't do what he needed to do and you don't want to put him in that situation,'' Toronto coach Mike Clemons said of Allen.

However, Wynn didn't fare any better in this contest, passingfor only 94 yards and one interception.

''The offence starts with the quarterback position and you've got to get consistency there,'' Clemons said. ''It's not something mysterious. If you get that, it drives the rest of the engine.''

The Alouettes took a 7-0 lead at 7:29 of the opening quarter when Edwards scored his first touchdown of the game.

Montreal's scoring drive was aided by a costly pass interference penalty by Toronto cornerback Jordan Younger.

Facing a second-and-25 situation, Montreal receiver Thyron Anderson was shoved to the ground by Younger, which drew the flag.

''Without their starting quarterback and all their running backs, that was not a true indication of who the Argonauts are,'' said Montreal coach Don Matthews.

''They were hampered by having a bunch of injuries and we took advantage of it.''

Edwards provides spark

Edwards was the catalyst to his team's dominationin time of possession. His performance also marked the first time this season he has gained more than 100 yards in a game.

''He ran with extra authority tonight,'' Matthews said.

Duval made three of four field goalsas theAlouettes built up a 16-0 half-time lead.

Montreal extended its advantage to 24-0 in the third quarter after Duval connected on two more field goals and Toronto kicker Noel Prefontaine conceded a safety.

The Alouettes put the Argonauts away in the fourth quarter when Edwards scored on a two-yardrun for league-leading10th touchdown at 6:20.

''We've found ways to win and we play better in the second half, which is the sign of a good team,'' said Montreal defensive tackle Ed Philion. ''We make adjustments. We've only given up one TD in the second half this year. That's a big part of our game."

The Argos avoided the embarrassment of being shut out when cornerback Kahlil Carter intercepted Montreal quarterback Nealon Greene and returned the ball 84 yards for a touchdown with less than three minutes remaining in the game.

Backup quarterback Eric Crouch replaced Wynn in the fourth, but fared no better against the Montreal defence.

With files from the Canadian Press