Burris couldn't save the Stamps
By Ian Busby, QMI Agency
|Henry Burris and the Stampeders were buried by the Eskimos in Monday's Labour Day Classic. (Al Charest/QMI Agency)
CALGARY - Henry Burris was on fire, hitting six different receivers on eight straight passes and finishing it off with a perfect TD strike.
But that was it.
For the rest of the Labour Day Classic, the Stampeders stunk up the joint, with Burris committing four turnovers, and the Edmonton Eskimos took advantage for a 35-7 CFL stomping Monday.
The Eskimos win creates a deadlock for first place in the West Division with both teams at 6-3, although Edmonton now holds the edge in the season series.
The two teams meet for a rematch Friday at Commonwealth Stadium.
On the first-quarter drive that gave the Stamps a 7-0 lead, Burris went 8-of-8 passing for 99 yards with a major to Nik Lewis. Things looked to be going great.
Outside of that one drive, Burris was 5-of-15 passing for 33 yards with two interceptions and two fumbles.
In the second half, he was drilled the back by Marcus Howard on a blindside hit, and the ball popped loose right to Greg Peach.
It was Peach who knocked the ball from Burris’ mitts on a scramble in the second quarter. Burris also tossed up a duck to Anthony Munoz for an easy interception in the third quarter, while he was picked off by Chris Thompson early in the final frame and departed after that.
The first three turnovers led to 17 Eskimos points, and the visitors were on cruise control.
Ricky Ray went 14-of-21 passing for 131 yards, throwing touchdowns to Andrew Nowacki (seven yards) and Adarius Bowman (31 yards) before departing with a full quarter to play and the Eskimos up 32-7.
The Eskimos didn’t show much creativity on offence but went deep into the playbook on special teams for a crucial play in the first half.
Jason Armstead caught a punt at midfield, turned and fired the ball across the field to Bowman, who from there had enough daylight to make a 44-yard gain.
That set up a field goal, and it was a small victory for the Stampeders defence to hold the Eskimos to just three points.
Usually the defence is the strength of the Stamps, but discipline was a huge problem in this one.
Right after the Eskimos got on the board with a Kerry Joseph one-yard major, Kevin Dixon threw someone down to take an unnecessary roughness penalty. That cost the Stamps a point as Damon Duval booted the kickoff into the endzone.
In the third quarter, defensive back Keon Raymond, who was on a two-game interception streak, hit Armstead after he had already stepped out of bounds to take another unnecessary roughness penalty.
Armstead was short of the first down, and the Eskimos would have punted, but Raymond’s penalty kept them alive, and they booted a field goal.
Derek Schiavone took over from Duval on field goals and had a nice day, going 4-of-4 on his chances, including hitting on a 46-yarder in the second quarter for the Esks.