Same ol' routine

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:18 AM ET

TORONTO -- The Calgary Stampeders continue to find dramatic ways to lose at the Rogers Centre.

At the end of a game they had no business winning, quarterback Henry Burris drove his team down inside the Toronto Argonauts zone and hit Ron Johnson with a pass over the middle.

Johnson was drilled and the ball popped loose on the turf, ending the Stamps attempted comeback and giving the Argos a 23-16 victory.

"The ground isn't supposed to cause a fumble," Johnson said. "I knew I had it. But we can't blame anybody else. We knew we should have played better. I dropped some balls I should have caught."

The loss drops Calgary to 9-7 and with a B.C. Lions victory yesterday over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, puts the Stamps a game behind in the race for the West Division title.

A year ago, the Stamps were beaten when Bashir Levingston took two returns back for touchdowns.

The Argos weren't as spectacular last night and looked lifeless until the third quarter when defensive lineman Eric England picked off Burris and rumbled 80 yards for a touchdown.

The score was England's first career touchdown as he managed to outrun both Ken-Yon Rambo and Joffrey Reynolds.

However, Calgary got a huge turnover in the final minutes when the Argos were trying kill the clock. Sheldon Napastuk and Brian Clark combined to strip Argos running back Jeff Johnson of the ball and set up a Rambo touchdown reception.

The Stamps completed the onside kick but failed in their bid to tie the game.

"If I don't have those turnovers, we aren't in this position," said Burris, who finished 21-of-34 passing for 286 yards with two interceptions and one TD.

"You can't take points off the board because you need them in this game. Neither one of us couldn't put the ball in the endzone. (England's touchdown) got the momentum going for them."

Toronto quarterback Damon Allen didn't throw the ball with his usual proficiency until late in the game.

But he did manage to lead the Argos on a 95-yard drive to set up a Ricky Williams nine-yard touchdown early in the final frame.

The crowd of 32,410 -- the largest of the season at Rogers Centre -- erupted when Williams scored his first touchdown since returning from a broken arm.

The suspended NFLer had 34 yards rushing on six carries but also caught three passes for 21 yards.

Allen finished 18-of-27 passing for 203 yards and two interceptions.

As for the incomplete pass to Johnson, Calgary president Ted Hellard may launch an official complaint with the league.

Head coach Tom Higgins wasn't as concerned because he felt his team should have played better, especially on special teams where the Argos beat the Stamps 267-137 in return yardage.

"It was ruled a non-catch," Higgins said. "The official went under the hood and made the decision.

"We were outplayed on defence and offensively. It wasn't good. There are no excuses. For whatever reason, we couldn't get the ball into the endzone.


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