June 8, 2023

Smoke, rain, thunder and lightning wreaked havoc on the CFL preseason opener at McMahon Stadium on Monday.

After two separate delays—one resulting from poor air high quality resulting from native wildfires and the opposite resulting from a thunderstorm—the Calgary Stampeders finally triumphed over the Edmonton Elks, 29–24.

“It was only a bizarre day,” Calgary Coach Dave Dickenson mentioned. “It began with smoke and we’re delaying this and that? After which the storm begins. We had been fortunate. We had been in (dressing room) at half. Generally I feel it is good for these guys – one thing totally different, one thing you could’t management and the way you’ll react.

“That was a little bit of a sloppy sport,” I believed. Finally, there are a lot of issues we will prepare and enhance, and I nonetheless just like the victory. Ultimately, it nonetheless labored out superb.”

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Auditioning as Calgary’s second or third quarterback behind starter Jake Mayer, Logan Bonner handed 31 yards to Luther Hakunawanh to start out the fourth quarter.

“I simply took what they gave me and simply did my job,” mentioned Bonner, who admitted to taking a brief nap throughout an extended break resulting from lightning strikes within the Calgary space.

Safety type of got here again and noticed the exit, and the nook type of sat on it, and Luther ran previous them. I used to be simply making an attempt to present him straightforward cross and angle and it was a landing.”

Bonner then engineered a seven-play 70-yard drive that ended when Riet-Jean Giraud ran throughout the aim line and threw an 8-yard landing.

“He seemed good,” Dickenson mentioned of Bonner. He sat for about 4 hours after which lastly bought his likelihood. I believed (guard) Chris (Reynolds) performed effectively too. I used to be just a little extra disillusioned with our beginning group. I did not suppose we did something particular in any respect. Truly, I believed they mainly took it to us early.

“Vets, younger guys are coming, so you must compete and you must exit and present your self.”

Clarke Barnes and Hakunawanhu caught landing passes to the dies, whereas René Paredes and Campbell Honest each made one subject aim.

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Maurice French and Gavin Cobb bought touchdowns for the Elks, and Dean Faithfull made three subject objectives and one.

“You at all times need to win,” mentioned French, who led all receivers with 10 catches for 119 yards. “Accepting this defeat, it worries me just a little. We have been there with out vets so now we have plenty of progress we will make and plenty of bugs we will enhance and repair.

“We knew they had been going to rent plenty of their veterans, so we had been positively competing with them to have an entire bunch of CFL rookies, me included.”

The beginning of the sport was delayed by half-hour resulting from smoky circumstances from the Alberta wildfires, in keeping with a league assertion, and extra time was wanted to observe air high quality and guarantee each groups had sufficient time to heat up.

“The choice to postpone the sport, topic to climate protocol, has been made by the league, each rival groups and the CFLPA,” the assertion mentioned.

The sport started shortly after 2:30 pm native time after the air high quality index was decided to be at an appropriate stage for athletes.

After scoreless first quarter-hour, the Elks took a 3–0 lead at 4:43 of the second quarter because of Faithfull’s 37-yard subject aim.

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The Stamps answered at 9:37 when Paredes hit a 39-yard subject aim.

Edmonton quarterback Jarret Doege then accomplished a four-game 70-yard rush to hit French with a 45-yard TD strike to place the guests up 10–3.

Regardless of the Stamps being pressured to hit the ball after their subsequent drive stalled, Branden Dozier placed on an outstanding particular staff play when he took the ball from a returning CJ Sims and returned it to the Edmonton 26-yard line. .

On the following play, quarterback Tommy Stevens handed 26 yards to Clark Barnes ultimately zone to tie the sport at 10–10.

Faithfull then missed a 34-yard subject aim as time expired within the first half. Though his shot went huge to the fitting, the ball went by means of the top zone for a single, giving Elks an 11-10 lead.

Shortly after the gamers returned to their dressing rooms, the sport was once more postponed resulting from a extreme storm, accompanied by heavy rains and lightning strikes within the McMahon Stadium space.

Followers had been suggested to take shelter within the foyer till it was deemed protected to return to the stands, however among the introduced crowd of 17,942 headed straight for his or her automobiles and left the stadium car parking zone.

After an roughly 90-minute delay, the second half started at 5:15 native time with cloudy skies.

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Faithfull hit a 23-yard subject aim at 7:38 of the third quarter to place the Elks up 14–11 earlier than the Stamps bought shut to 1 once more at 11:30 when Honest made a 42-yard subject aim.

The Stamps began the fourth quarter in nice place on the sector, and Bonner, Calgary’s fourth quarterback within the sport, capitalized on a fast landing for Hakunawanh. After Dedrick Mills transformed a two-point conversion, the Stamps took a 21–14 lead.

Giro added his fast rating shortly after participant Toshiki Sato added a 59-yard punch single.

Cobb ended the scoring when he caught a 27-yard landing from Elks QB Kai Loxley with simply 15 seconds left within the sport.

The Elks will host the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Saturday in a pre-season sport, and the Stampeders will go to Vancouver on June 1 to play the BC Lions.

Lawrence Heinen, The Canadian Press

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