The Toronto Argonauts tasted sweet revenge Tuesday night, reversing a lopsided loss in Week 1 to beat the Winnipeg Blue Bombers 38-21 at Rogers Centre.
The Bombers let the Argos run wild on them, both on the ground and through the air, on the way to their third loss of the season. Argos tailback Curtis Steele led the way with two touchdowns including the strike that ultimately won the game.
The Bombers started out on the right foot, drawing first blood early in the first quarter. Troy Stoudermire, an early-season pick-up by Winnipeg, made his debut returning kicks for the Blue and Gold and didn’t disappoint, with his first return going 40 yards.
With the Bombers in great field position, Winnipeg running back Nic Grigsby busted off a 37-yard trot, setting up a Drew Willy pass that found Cory Watson nine yards out in the end zone for the 7-0 lead.
The Bombers and their counterparts would trade touchdowns for much of the first half, with the Bombers seeing Rory Kohlert making an impressive 21-yard sideline grab to go up 14-7 before the Argos rattled off two straight to end the half. Maurice Mann and Zander Robinson were the beneficiaries of Ricky Ray slings to take the 21-14 lead.
The Bombers looked to have recovered in the third quarter, after Chris Randle forced an Argos fumble. A few plays later and Grigsby had his CFL-leading sixth rushing major of the year.
But that would be it for the Bombers on Tuesday night.
Ray had his way with the Bombers, throwing for four touchdowns, including two in the fourth quarter – one to Steele and the other to Spencer Watt, a 33-yard strike to make it 38-21.
Ray finished the game with 297 yards, completing 26-of-33 passes on route to his team’s third win of the season.
Poor tackling on the part of the Winnipeg defence led to many extra yards for the home team.
And speaking of the defence, lineman Cordaro Howard had a night to forget, committing a pair of illegal-blocking infractions, one resulting in the negation of a 76-yard touchdown to Romby Bryant which would have tied the game at 28.
The Bombers looked anemic on offence, registering a paltry 232 total yards compared to the Argos’ 462. Willy, who looked solid early, couldn’t get much going down the stretch, throwing for 193 yards, many of which came in garbage time. Willy also had two touchdowns.
The Bombers have 10 days between now and their next contest on Aug. 22 at home against the Alouettes. They don’t get a much easier opponent than Montreal to stop the bleeding, either.