Stampeders 44 Roughriders 44
CALGARY — Brett Ralph was held to a single catch, but it was a big one for the Calgary Stampeders.
Ralph caught a five-yard touchdown pass from Henry Burris in overtime to secure a 44-44 tie for against the Roughriders, as both teams remained tied atop the CFL West with 8-6-1 records.
“What better situation for him then to make the biggest play of the game and that was to seal the deal and tie the game up,” said Burris, who completed 23-of-34 passes for 285 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. “A guy like Ralphie, he’s an even-keeled player. He always plays hard for you and you know he’s going to make the plays when they count. He definitely did that in that situation.”
Calgary scored first in overtime as Burris tossed a five-yard pass to Rob Cote in the end zone, but the Riders came right back with a one-yard touchdown run by Chris Szarka, his third score of the game.
Chris Getzlaf then caught a short pass from Saskatchewan quarterback Darian Durant and broke a tackle before rambling 35 yards into the end zone to give the Riders the lead.
That set the stage for Ralph to make a diving catch in the end zone to force the tie in front of 38,623 fans at McMahon Stadium.
“Henry rolled out and made just a picture perfect throw,” Ralph said. “It’s nice to score at that time but it’s too bad we couldn’t take care of it in regulation and come out with the win.”
The Stampeders took a 30-22 lead at 11:30 of the fourth quarter when Joffrey Reynolds ran four yards across the goal-line, his third rushing touchdown of the contest.
“We did score the touchdown to go up 30-22, but we had plenty of opportunities earlier on to get to that 30-point plateau and really widen the margin, but we didn’t do that,” said Burris, who was disappointed the game even got to overtime.
Saskatchewan then responded as Durant led the Riders on an eight-play, 67-yard scoring drive, that was capped off when he tossed a 25-yard touchdown pass to Andy Fantuz. Durant tied the game with a two-point convert to force overtime when he tossed the ball to Rob Bagg just across the goal line.
“This was one of the CFL classics,” Saskachewan receiver Jason Clermont said after the contest.
Durant, who completed 35 of 45 passes for 427 yards and two touchdowns, was also disappointed that the Riders couldn’t hold on to their 44-37 lead in overtime.
“It would have been great for us to get some separation from them (in the standings),” Durant said. “Two points would have been huge but at least we didn’t lose.”
The same two teams will play their final games of the season against each other in Regina on Nov. 7.
“To get a tie helps us as Calgary has to come to our place in the final week,” said Saskatchewan running back Wes Cates, referring to the fact that the Riders edged the Stamps 24-23 earlier in the season in Calgary on Aug. 1.
Sandro DeAngelis kicked a pair of field goals, Burke Dales added a single while the Stamps also recorded a safety during regulation.
Meanwhile, Luca Congi kicked a pair of field goals and added two singles to account for the rest of Saskatchewan’s scoring.