The Argos have taken round one in their first of four meetings with the Tiger-Cats in the next five weeks. Toronto fell behind 13-0 early to Hamilton, but a special teams and defensive score late, helped the Boatmen storm past the Ti-Cats 34-20 at BMO Field.
Toronto would outscore Hamilton 28-6 in the second half, thanks to a combined effort from all three phases.
The victory by Double Blue moves them to 4-3, as they remain two and a half games ahead of 2-6 Hamilton and Montreal. The Argonauts and Ticats will meet again on Friday night for Round Two in the Battle of the QEW at Tim Horton’s field.
CFL Week 9 Game Recap: Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ Toronto Argonauts
The Hamilton Tiger-Cats took advantage of having a swirling wind at their back to start the game and a sluggish Argonauts team to score on their first two drives. A 28-yard Seth Small field goal on their first series and then a Dane Evans two-yard touchdown pass to RB Don Jackson on their second series to give Hamilton an early 10-0 lead.
Unfortunately for Hamilton, WR Bralon Addison, who got off to a great start with three receptions for 52 yards, would go down hard on Hamilton’s TD drive. The game had to be stopped while Addison was carted off with a left leg injury.
The Argos’ struggles on offense would continue as the first quarter ended. They would punt the ball for the third consecutive series back to Hamilton. The Ti-Cats would keep the momentum on their side, driving downfield for more points, another 28-yard field goal by Seth Small to give Hamilton a 13-0 advantage.
Down by 13 points, Toronto would mount their first drive into Hamilton territory. But on second and two at Hamilton’s 36, but because of recurring line communication issues for the Argos, Andrew Harris would be stopped for a loss. As a result, the Boatmen would settle for a Boris Bede 44-yard field goal for their first points of the game.
Both teams would trade multiple punts after Toronto’s first score. Matthew Shiltz would come in for a Hamilton series, while the Argos offensive line would continue to have issues, allowing sacks on two consecutive series.
Towards the end of the first half, Hamilton would drive to midfield, riding a 24-yard punt return by Lawrence Woods. The drive would stall, but it would net the Ti-Cats a rouge on a Michael Domagala punt.
Now trailing 14-3, with time running out in the second quarter, Toronto would march into Hamilton territory, with two completions for 32 yards to Eric Rogers and DaVaris Daniels. However, a Rogers drop at Hamilton’s five-yard line would force the Argos to settle for their second field goal attempt, and Boris Bede would connect from 30 yards to bring the halftime score to 14-6.
Hamilton @ Toronto Second Half Highlights
The Ticats would take the opening kickoff in the second half and drive deep into Toronto territory. But the Argos defense would stiffen up and hold Hamilton to another short field goal, and Seth Small would convert a 22-yard try to give his team a 17-6 lead.
Toronto would respond with their best drive of the game. Starting from their own 40, McLeod Bethel-Thompson would connect with Cam Phillips for a 49-yard gain on a busted coverage by Hamilton’s secondary.
Two players later, MBT would elude the Ticats pass rush in the pocket and find Phillips again, this time from 13 yards out for an Argonauts touchdown. Toronto would go for two and succeed when Thompson completed the conversion pass to Andrew Harris. The sequence of events would cut Hamilton’s lead to 17-14.
Toronto would force Hamilton to punt the ball on their next series and get the ball back down three. But the Argos offense would proceed with a quick two and out.
With the third quarter winding down, a 65-yard punt by John Haggerty would pin Hamilton inside their five-yard line thanks to a faux pas by returner Lawrence Woods, who fielded the ball as it was about to go in the end zone.
The mistake by Woods would lead to a safety on third down as Hamilton would be flagged for what looked like an intentional procedure penalty. As a result, Hamilton’s lead would shrink to 17-16.
The Argos would take over at their 40, down one, and proceed to drive across midfield with two first-down pass completions by McLeod Bethel-Thompson and a QB sneak to move the chains.
As the 4th quarter commenced, the Argonauts’ offense would face a 3rd and two at Hamilton’s 37-yard line. Nik Lewis’s favorite kicker, Boris Bede, would trot out for a 44-yard field goal attempt to potentially give Toronto its first lead. But Bede would miss the kick wide left. The ball would sail out of bounds, netting the Boatmen a single and trying the score at 17.
Toronto’s defense would force a quick two and out on Hamilton’s ensuing series. And the Boatmen’s special teams would produce their second score of the season. As Trevor Hoyte blocked Michael Domagala’s punt. Benoit Marion would recover the bouncing ball down the field and return it 24 yards for the score. Bede would convert the extra point, and in one fell swoop, the Argos would have their first lead of the game at 24-17.
Trailing for the first time in the game, Hamilton would pick up one first down but would punt the ball again back to Toronto. However, the Argonauts would have a quick two and out on offense.
Hamilton would dodge another potential disaster on special teams when Wynton McManis would force a Lawrence Woods fumble on the ensuing punt. But Mason Bennett would recover the loose ball for the Ticats.
Woods’ 31-yard return would set Hamilton near midfield for their next series with just over 7 minutes left in the fourth quarter. Dane Evans would take a shot downfield to Tim White, that would fall incomplete. However, Orlando Steinhauer would successfully challenge the play for pass interference. The DPI by Royce Metchie would give Hamilton the ball at Toronto’s 12-yard line.
Toronto’s defense would hold Hamilton to a field goal. Seth Small would come on to cut the Argos’ lead to 24-20 with a 17-yard field goal.
Up four with under five minutes remaining, the Argos offense would pick up two first downs, one on a 15-yard connection to Brandon Banks, his first catch of the game against his former team. On a first and ten at Hamilton’s 41, Bethe-Thompson would hit DaVaris Daniels for a 30-yard pickup. Hamilton would unsuccessfully challenge for offensive pass interference on the play.
The big play would give Toronto a first and ten at the Ticats 11, as the three-minute warning arrived. The Argos would fail to give themselves a two-score lead when the drive stalled. With long snapper Jake Reinhart injured and Brandon Calver ejected. Trevor Hoyte would come on to be the Argos’ third long snapper. Despite a high snap from Hoyte, Boris Bede would extend Toronto’s lead to 27-20 with an 18-yard field goal.
Down seven with 2:25 left, Hamilton would get the football at their 30-yard line. Facing a third and ten on their own end. Hamilton would opt to go for the first down. Dane Evans would be intercepted by Chris Edwards, who would take the ball 40 yards for a score. The big defensive play would give Toronto a 34-20 lead.
Hamilton would try to move rapidly down the field to answer the two-score deficit. But after a 37-yard pass play to Steve Dunbar. The Ticats offense would turn the ball over on downs with just over a minute left.
The Argos would run out the clock and take round one over their arch-nemesis.
CFL Week 9 Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ Toronto Argonauts Box Score
Hamilton Tiger-Cats Stats
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Toronto Argonauts Stats
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