Canadian pass catchers finally hit paydirt in overtime

WES GILBERTSON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 1:16 PM ET

Brett Ralph hadn't hit paydirt since last year's Grey Cup game.

For seldom-used fullback Rob Cote, it'd been more than twice that long.

But the Calgary Stampeders teammates snapped those streaks yesterday in spectacular fashion, each making a trip to the endzone during the overtime session of a 44-44 sawoff against the Saskatchewan Roughriders at McMahon Stadium.

Ralph's five-yard touchdown reception cemented the tie and sent spectators adorned in red and green home with crooked smiles on their faces.

"It's always nice to get the ball when you're in the endzone, but at the same time, as long as we're getting touchdowns as an offence, I'm happy," Ralph said. "I don't care if we run it, if we quarterback sneak it or if we throw it, it's all the same to me. But it was nice to be able to make the play.

"I'm not going to think I'm on the top of the world, by any means, but it was one of those situations where a touchdown helped us get a tie and it's what we needed at that point in the game. But you come out of a game like that and you feel like you could've won it, so it's almost a bittersweet feeling."

There's been plenty of chatter about Ralph's touchdown drought, which dates back to the third quarter of the Stamps' victory over the Montreal Alouettes in last year's championship game.

Cote, meanwhile, hadn't made a trip to the endzone since July 28, 2007.

That all changed when quarterback Henry Burris called his number on a six-yard slant route on the first possession of overtime yesterday. After crossing the goal-line stripe, Cote spiked the ball with so much muster he might have left a dent in the turf.

"That's my first in a couple years -- that why I got so excited," Cote grinned. "It's always nice to get into the endzone. I wish it would've come on a W but, you know, it's not a loss either so I'm still happy about it."

Burris was thrilled to see both soft-spoken Canadians capitalize on their chances to put points on the board.

"Guys like Cote, when they step when their opportunity is called, big things happen. It was big for him to get that one" Burris said. "And Ralphie, I know people say he's had ups and downs, but one thing about Ralphie is he's always there when you need him. He made a huge play in a big situation. It doesn't matter how things are going, No. 11 is always there when you need him."

WES.GILBERTSON@SUNMEDIA.CA


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