Photo Credit Mark Steffens
Anyone who follows the BC Lions knows that they aren’t going to roll over or simply give up, and on this night their strength came to life.
Given the size of the expected crowd and the somber nature of the evening marking the first Truth and Reconciliation Day the Lions professionalism showed.
In what many thought was pure class, players on both teams wore orange tape for Truth and Reconciliation Day that also had the Lions sporting an Indigenous-themed logo on their helmets.
The logo was designed by Kwakwaka’wakw/Tlingit artist Corrine Hunt. who was born in Alert Bay and is a member of the Raven Gwa’wina clan from Ts’akis, a Komoyue village on Vancouver Island.
Conversation in the press box evolved around the fact that Adams Jr. joined the Lions close to a month ago, he managed to throw his first TD pass wearing Black and Orange.
The end result saw him throw for 305 yds and two TD’s while being sacked five times managing to complete 17 of his 21 attempts in the air.
While it appears that the Lions motto is “Roar” on this night all the RedBlacks could manage was to get close, but close only counts in horseshoes.
The RedBlacks were 3-11 that saw Nick Arbuckle (QB) managing one TD, one interception while connecting 27 of his 36 attempts for 363 yard.
When it comes down to the final result quite often it\s the kicker who puts points on the board and for the RedBlacks kicker Lewis Ward who made four of five FG attempts, one which included a 47 yard kick.
It may have been the crowd that gave the Lions that added “punch” they needed given the fact that they jumped out to the early lead,
With seconds left on the clock in the first half Lions QB Adams drifted a 34-yard pass to Hatcher setting up Whyte for a 43-yard FG putting the Lions up 24-6 at the half.
It was Arbuckle who managed a nine-yard scoring drive followed by a seven yard “lob pass” to Tevaun Smith who ran in for a two yard scoring for a major.
The RedBlacks managed only 431 yards and for those in the crowd and press box if the Lions want to extend the season this is one area they have to tighten up.
The Lions managed their first interception in the past three games but not until the final quarter that saw Gary Peters intercept a pass clearly intended for Smith.
After the third the Lions were up 27-12 following FG’s by both teams, but it was the Lions who extended their lead in the fourth following a quarterback sneak that saw Antonio Pipkin get his second TD of the night.
It seemed like a hush fell on the crowd when Lucky Whitehead was helped off the field early in the third which was later mentioned that he suffered an ankle injury.
To the delight of the crowd he (Whitehead) returned and saw Adams deliver a 25-yard pass which was followed by a 35-yard delivery to Phymes setting up a first-and-goal.
The Lions entered the game following a 25-11 loss to the Stampeders this past week and with playoffs around the corner the Lions knew the pressure was on them to perform.
Following the game Adams mentioned “We knew what we had to do and I don’t like the way I finished (against Ottawa), but we’ll get better. We’ll watch the film and get better from it.”
The Lions have a week of practice with their next match-up playing against the East Division-leading Toronto Argonauts, October 8th in the centre of the universe – Toronto.
The Redblacks hit the turf October 10th taking on the Alouettes in Montreal.
It might sound strange to mention but regardless of the loss the RedBlacks still remain in contention with a pair of games against Montreal.
If and only if, which is a big uphill battle, a win would see them pulling out a 7-11 stat on the season.
To visit the box score on the game follow this link.
The Lions have both Monday and Tuesday as off day’s and hit the practice field Tuesday at their home facility in Surrey.
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About Steve Erickson