Elks down Tiger-Cats 29-25 for first win of CFL season

HAMILTON –

Jalen Collins recovered a fumble and scored on a 14-yard return in the fourth quarter to give the Edmonton Elks their first win of the season with a 29-25 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Friday.

Elks defensive back Jeawon Taylor stripped Hamilton quarterback Dane Evans of the ball on a rush to the outside. Collins recovered for his game-winning score with one minute 38 seconds remaining in the game.

Hamilton’s offence then progressed to the Elks’ 30-yard line, but turned the ball over on downs.

Elks rookie quarterback Tre Ford of Niagara Falls, Ont., completed 15 of 26 passes for 159 yards and a touchdown in his first CFL career start. Ford was intercepted once.

Evans was 20-for-31 in passing for 197 yards and a touchdown throw. He was intercepted twice.

Edmonton improved to 1-3, while Hamilton has lost four in a row to start a season for the first time since going 0-8 in 2017.

Elks head coach Chris Jones has never begun a season with four consecutive losses.

Down 10 points to start the third quarter, the Elks yielded a 33-yard field goal to Hamilton before booting field goals of their own from 38 and 32 yards.

The Elks trailed 22-15 entering the final quarter.

Edmonton’s Matthew Thomas picked off Evans, his sixth interception of the season, to start the fourth quarter.

That set up Ford’s first career touchdown pass of 10 yards to Kenny Lawler to tie the game 22-22.

Hamilton pulled ahead on Michael Donagala’s 33-field goal with 3:11 remaining before Collins gave the visitors the lead.

The Ticats debuted an alternate steel grey uniform with yellow name plates and black numbers.

During a timeout midway through the first quarter, the CFL club honoured the OHL champion and Memorial Cup finalist Hamilton Bulldogs.

Hamilton led 16-6 after the first quarter. Hemmed near their goal line, the Elks conceded a safety after their opening drive.

The home side marched for an opening touchdown on its next possession.

Evans threw for his fifth touchdown of the season, hitting receiver Steven Dunbar with a 21-yard strike and a 9-0 lead.

Ford appeared more relaxed on his second drive. He led the Elks down the field for a score in 13 plays, resulting in a one-yard scoring run by Kai Locksley on third-and-one.

Edmonton missed the extra point, but Lawrence Woods grabbed the ensuing kickoff for a 72-yard touchdown return.In an unproductive second quarter, the Elks scored a single off a 59-yard field goal attempt from Sergio Castillo.

A late 25-yard field goal from Domagala extended Hamilton’s lead, but the Ticats were forced to settle for a safety in the final minute.

Kameron Kelly intercepted a late first-half pass from Ford at Hamilton’s 15-yard line to preserve the 10-point advantage at halftime.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 1, 2022.

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