Lions 23 Argonauts 17
VANCOUVER — B.C. Lions coach Wally Buono was drawn to tears after his team defeated the Toronto Argonauts 23-17 Saturday night to make him the CFL’s all-time winning coach.
An emotional Buono talked about his mother, who is battling Alzheimer’s disease in Montreal, his deep religious beliefs, and Don Matthews, his long-time friend who previously held the record.
“There is a lot of things about this that is important to me,” said Buono, who collected his 232nd victory in a 19-year career with B.C. and Calgary. “You have to look at who you are.
“I have been very fortunate in my life. My mother has always sacrificed for us. Right now she is not doing well. Then you go through all the people that have helped you. This is not something that one individual can accomplish.”
The Lions used an aggressive defence to win the game while and quarterback Buck Pierce looked poised in his first action in a month.
The snarling Lions defence collected five sacks, three by defensive end Ricky Foley, while Corey Banks snagged two interceptions.
A 54-yard punt return by Ryan Grice-Mullen set up Sean Whyte’s go-ahead, 32-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter.
Matthews was among the crowd of 27,515 at B.C. Place for the game..
“We have a friendship, a mutual respect,” Buono said about Matthews.
“Don has won a lot of games. We understand the pressure of winning. A lot of people think it’s easy.
“Every game is tough. That is one of the things I think we respect about each other.”