Hits difference in Stamps win

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:25 AM ET

WINNIPEG -- Demetrice Morley was supposed to be a ball-hawk in the Calgary Stampeders secondary.

Turns out the rookie can hit too.

Just ask Terrence Jeffers-Harris.

With the Stamps down by six late in the fourth quarter, Morley drilled the Winnipeg Blue Bombers receiver, knocking the ball loose.

Keon Raymond, who earlier had a 66-yard interception return TD, grabbed the ball and ran 32 yards to set up the game-winning Ken-Yon Rambo major.

When Justin Palardy missed a 44-yard field goal attempt in the final minute, the Stamps escaped Winnipeg with a 21-20 win to improve to 2-1.

“I didn’t see the ball come out,” said Morley. “I just saw Keon running down the field. There were blocks for him, and he made a great play on the ball.

“I think it was a good debut for me. It was going fast, but with my teammates to help me, I was able to play well.”

It was a wild game that featured two blocked field goals, massive late hits on quarterbacks and an early exit by Bombers starting pivot Buck Pierce.

Morley was one of those offenders early in the game, as he drilled Pierce after the ball was gone.

He more than made up for that infraction.

The defence managed to create three turnovers by the Bombers, but none was bigger than Morley’s forced fumble.

“I was thinking about jumping on this guy,” Raymond said about Jeffers-Harris. “I thought, ‘This guy is big.’ I cut him down instead. D-Mo made a great play. I praise God that the ball came out. I decided to take off as fast as I could.”

With a stagnant offence thanks to a ferocious Bombers pass rush, the only points the Stamps could muster in the first half came courtesy of Raymond.

He stepped in front of a lot out pass by Pierce and was off to the races. It was Raymond’s first pick six of his career, and he kept the football as a souvenir.

“I said, ‘Let’s eat.’ Let me take one to the house,” said Raymond. “It’s my wife’s (Bianca) birthday. I told her I was giving her a show and hopefully I did.”

The Stamps defence gave Pierce a rough ride, and the often-injured quarterback couldn’t handle it.

First, it was Charleston Hughes who grabbed the Bombers' meal ticket and wrapped him up in a grappling hold before pile driving him to the turf.

But it appeared that it was a late blast by Robert McCune that did Pierce in. McCune, who put a wallop on Travis Lulay in last week’s victory in B.C., drilled Pierce well after the signal-caller sent an incomplete pass for Clarence Denmark.

Pierce came up limping and didn’t answer the ball to start the second half due to a quad injury.

He left going 9-of-16 passing for 149 yards. Pierce threw a 49-yard TD to Terrence Edwards to get his team on the board early, but he had two interceptions, including one by Brandon Smith.

Joey Elliott replaced him and managed to engineer a third-quarter touchdown drive that third-stringer Alex Brink capped off with a one-yard touchdown plunge.

On the other side, the Stamps only managed two field goals, the punt single and a late Rambo TD for their scoring, but it was just enough.

Burris went 17-of-32 passing for 183 yards, while Joffrey Reynolds managed just 40 yards on seven carries.

“We need to become a more cohesive offence and play with some skill,” said Stamps head coach John Hufnagel.

“Both defences played very well. We got turnovers to sneak out a win.

“I’m satisfied with the effort. Both teams played with a lot of effort. We’ve done that for three games. We need to play better. When we go back to work, we need to become a better football team.”


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