Tuesday, July 28, 2015

’Riders open Cup defence with win

REGINA—The Saskatchewan Roughriders’ defence had Hamilton Tiger-Cats’ quarterback Zach Collaros under siege for much of the night.
The Riders sacked the first-year Hamilton starter 10 times, and limited the Ticats to less than 200 yards total offence, in a convincing 31-10 victory yesterday at Mosaic Stadium.

“Our defence played lights out,” said Riders’ quarterback Darian Durant, who tossed a pair of touchdown passes in the game.
“Give them the lead and they can really tee off on the opposing team.”
Ricky Foley led the Riders’ defence with six tackles and three sacks.
John Chick and Derek Walker each had two sacks, and the defending Grey Cup champions looked dominant in front of 19,285 spectators who braved wet and windy weather.
“It seemed like a lot of things we working for us,” Chick noted. “You see the chemistry of the guys today.
“A bunch of us have a full season under our belts working together and the new guys are coming along,” he added.
“To see everyone working together was great.”
The poor weather didn’t slow the Riders’ offence. Saskatchewan scored on three of its first four possessions and enjoyed a 24-1 lead at halftime.
The Riders racked up 196 yards of offence in the first half compared to just 96 yards from Hamilton.
First-year Riders’ running back Anthony Allen rushed for 158 yards and scored two touchdowns in his first CFL start.
Durant, meanwhile, connected with eight different receivers on the day, and threw touchdown strikes to Allen and fellow newcomer Brett Swain.
“We live out here,” Durant replied when asked how well the offence moved the ball despite the lousy weather.
“It has been raining for a month and we’ve been practising in it day in and day out.
“We prepared ourselves for this and we did a great job of not letting [the weather] be a factor,” he added.
Ticats’ head coach Kent Austin didn’t use the weather as an excuse for his team’s poor debut, although it didn’t help in its bid for a come-from-behind victory on the road.
“I saw not a very good football team today,” Austin admitted. “We have to make a great improvement in a lot of areas right now.
“I have to get our guys more discipline,” he stressed.
“Our penalty situation is ridiculous right now.”
Saskatchewan next will visit the Toronto Argonauts (0-1) in Week 2.
Hamilton, meanwhile will travel to Edmonton to take on the Eskimos (1-0).

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