Unit collapses

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:34 AM ET

The Edmonton Eskimos' special team's unit picked a horrible time to fall on its face. Self-destructing in the final 1:20 last night, the special teams made two key mistakes in a critical 43-28 loss to the B.C. Lions at Commonwealth Stadium.

B.C. punter Paul McCallum pulled a fake punt from midfield with 1:20 left on a third and four play. That allowed the Lions to retain possession and eventually find Geroy Simon for a touchdown on the continuing drive, making it 43-28 with 54 seconds remaining.

With a chance to salvage the tie-breaker situation - Edmonton held a 12-point advantage in head-to-head score entering the game in the season series against the Lions - Eskimos kicker Noel Prefontaine had his field-goal attempt blocked with seven seconds left.

That block gave the season series to B.C. based on points.

If Edmonton had made the field goal, the Esks would have won the tie-breaker because they would have had more divisional head-to-head wins.

"My timing feels like it always is," said Prefontaine after the block from the 33-yard line. "The (snap) was fine, the hold was fine."

It marked the second straight week the Esks had given up a blocked field goal to the Lions. The mistake last week came from the Leos penetrating the line.

Nobody was pointing fingers last night in the Esks' dressing room to the cause of the latest block.

"You see one blocked field goal you see something you need to clean up," said Esks lineman John Comiskey. "When you see two blocked field goals, you say: 'Wow. That is a major problem.' "

FINISH LINES ...

The Lions finished with 141 rushing yards compared to the Esks' 32 ... In his first start in five games, Edmonton RB AJ Harris was held to nine yards on five carries ... Edmonton failed to record a sack after four last week against B.C.

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GOAT HORNS

Ricky Ray, EDM

Fumbled the ball twice in the second half - both leading to B.C. points. The two mistakes led to points against and a B.C. victory.

BIG CATCH

MAURICE MANN, EDM

In one-on-one coverage with Dante Marsh with four seconds left in the first half, Mann won the hand battle in the corner of the end zone to get the touchdown on the 13-yard throw from Ricky Ray.

BIG CATCH 2

MAURICE MANN, EDM

Ray dropped the ball just over the out-stretched fingers of B.C. linebacker Javier Glatt and into Mann. Falling to the ground, Mann was aware enough to get back up and ramble for another 20 yards since he wasn't touched by LaVar Glover. The pass and run play went for 44 yards. Edmonton's Kelly Campbell scored on the next play to give the Esks a 28-20 lead with 10:25 left in the third quarter.

BIG HIT

KENNY ONATOLU, EDM

On a blitz with three minutes remaining in the second quarter Onatolu came untouched and hammered B.C. quarterback Buck Pierce with a wicked shot just under his chin. To Pierce's credit, he got rid of the ball just before impact for a 15-yard completion to Geroy Simon.

NEXT UP

EDMONTON ESKIMOS AT SASKATCHEWAN ROUGHRIDERS, OCT. 25, 3:30 P.M., TSN


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