Eskimos down Argos to stay alive

The Edmonton Eskimos got the prefect boost for their playoff hopes — a game against the down-and-out Toronto Argonauts.

Toronto Argonaut Steve Schmidt can’t come up with the catch as he is defended by Edmonton Eskimo Jason Goss on Friday. Edmonton won 36-10.

Eskimos 36 Argonauts 10

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Eskimos got the prefect boost for their playoff hopes — a game against the down-and-out Toronto Argonauts.

T.J. Hill returned an interception 58-yards for a touchdown to start the third quarter as the Eskimos staved off post-season elimination with a 36-10 victory over the Argonauts on Friday night.

“It was a great win because we have been struggling lately,” said Eskimos head coach Richie Hall.

“Our backs were to the wall and we fought like cats out there. It was good not only to win, but to win one in a convincing manner.”

The Eskimos (8-9) will advance through to the CFL East semifinal if Hamilton and Winnipeg (both 7-9) suffer losses over the weekend. Hamilton hosts Saskatchewan on Saturday while Winnipeg plays in Montreal on Sunday. Hamilton and Winnipeg face each other on the final week of the regular season.

Edmonton could also still secure a spot in the Western semifinal if B.C. (8-8) loses to Calgary on Saturday and the Eskimos next Friday.

“We did some good things out there,” said Eskimos quarterback Ricky Ray, who threw for 332 yards in the contest. “It was important for us to get a lead and play from in front for once. We have to continue to play entire 60-minute games like I felt we did tonight. It was nice to see everything emerging for us offensively. It’s going to be a tougher test next week with everything that could be on the line.”

It was the seventh consecutive loss for the Argos, dead last in the league at 3-14.

“I really didn’t see what I wanted from my team tonight,” said Toronto head coach Bart Andrus. “I wanted to see a lot more. There are guys that are making a case for themselves, both ways, right now. We are going to be revamping again and changing personnel so we have to see who fits.”

Toronto finished up with some rather embarrassing statistics in the game, with just 20 yards rushing and taking 23 penalties for 155 yards.

Edmonton started the scoring midway through the first quarter. Derek Schiavone kicked a field goal after an Efrem Hill reception in the end zone was ruled out of bounds.

The Eskimos caught a break as linebacker Tim St. Pierre fell on a bobbled Argos snap at the Toronto 32-yard line, leading to an eight-yard untouched run into the end zone by Arkee Whitlock on the final play of the first quarter.

Edmonton went up 17-0 midway through the second as they followed up a 34-yard pass to Fred Stamps to the Toronto 20 with an eight-yard passing touchdown from Ray to Jason Barnes.

Justin Medlock’s 26-yard field goal got the Argos on the board with four minutes to play in the first half.

Edmonton responded with a field goal before Toronto cut the lead to 20-10 with its first touchdown of the game. Quarterback Stephen Reaves’ tipped pass was caught by Chad Lucas for a one-yard touchdown.

The Eskimos didn’t take long to respond to the Argo touchdown. Hill picked off Reaves and took the ball 58 yards into the end zone to make it 27-10. It was the only scoring play of the third quarter.

Schiavone kicked three more field goals in the fourth quarter for a total of five on the night.

Edmonton finishes off the regular season next Friday in B.C. while Toronto wraps things up at home to Montreal next Saturday.

Notes: Edmonton kicker/punter Noel Prefontaine didn’t play due to an ankle injury that has been nagging him the past couple weeks. Backup Derek Schiavone took his spota Eskimos receiver Maurice Mann missed the game with a leg injury and was replaced by Efrem Hilla Toronto rookie DT Etienne Legare took on the long snapping duties as TE Steve Schmidt sat out with an injurya DB/CB Sammy Joseph got his first CFL start in place of veteran CB Jordan Younger who missed the game with a toe injurya The Argos have had their way with Edmonton in recent years, winning eight of the previous 10 games against the Esks… The Eskimos entered the game just 1-4 on Friday nights this seasona The Argos have been the only team worse than Edmonton in the giveaway/takeaway ratio at -19 to Edmonton’s -16a Edmonton eliminated Toronto from the playoff picture two weeks ago.

Just Posted

Gasoline Alley Harley Davidson hosts 7th annual Toy Run

Bikers jumped on their motorcycles this weekend to help make Christmas better… Continue reading

Innisfail RCMP locate drugs during traffic stop

A Rocky Mountain House man is facing charges after Innisfail RCMP located… Continue reading

Expert says acquittal of Alberta parents in boy’s death unlikely to set precedent

CALGARY — A law professor says the acquittal of an Alberta couple… Continue reading

Take Back the Night rally marches through downtown Red Deer

Dozens marched through the city’s downtown chanting, “Red Deer unite, take back… Continue reading

Houston area sees relief, rescues after Imelda leaves 4 dead

HOUSTON — Emergency workers used boats Friday to rescue about 60 residents… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Tuesday Bower Place Community Association Seniors Card and Coffee party at 1:30… Continue reading

Missing hiker found safe after spending night on North Vancouver mountain

VANCOUVER — Rescue crews have found a missing female hiker safe after… Continue reading

Trudeau was only one in dark makeup at 2001 party but nobody took offence: attendee

VANCOUVER — A man who attended an “Arabian Nights” gala held by… Continue reading

McKenna defends Canada’s climate credibility amid Trudeau controversy

OTTAWA — Liberal cabinet minister Catherine McKenna says Canada still has credibility… Continue reading

Blue Jays rookie Bo Bichette trying to “be smart” with head injury

NEW YORK — Blue Jays rookie shortstop Bo Bichette says he’s feeling… Continue reading

Climate activists step up protests in Britain and France

PARIS — Environmental activists in Britain and France stepped up campaigns Saturday… Continue reading

Man from Winnipeg who was hiking alone found dead in Banff National Park

LAKE LOUISE, Alta. — A hiker has been found dead in Banff… Continue reading

Singh campaigns in Toronto, May in Winnipeg, as Liberal and Tory leaders pause

OTTAWA — Jagmeet Singh and Elizabeth May are continuing on the campaign… Continue reading

Most Read