Leos clinch West
By Gerry Moddejonge, QMI Agency
|BC Lions slotback Shawn Gore (C) celebrates his touchdown against the Montreal Alouettes with teammates Tim Brown (L), Paris Jackson and quarterback Travis Lulay (R) during the first half of their CFL football game in Vancouver, British Columbia November 5, 2011. (REUTERS/Andy Clark)
The Battle of Alberta will open the CFL’s West Division playoffs next weekend.
In their first home playoff game since 2004, the Edmonton Eskimos will take on the Calgary Stampeders in the semifinal round at Commonwealth Stadium on Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
All three western playoff teams came into this week at 10-7 and all left with a win, leaving the B.C. Lions on top with the season-series tiebreaker over both the second-place Eskimos and the Stampeders in third.
“It just shows how competitive the West Division is,” said Eskimos head coach Kavis Reed, calling the 2011 season an “anomaly” when five playoff positions were determined by a tiebreaker. “Nothing changes. We prepared for Calgary anyway.”
Edmonton beat Calgary two games to one in their season series, while B.C. beat the Eskimos three times in their four meetings to earn first place and the bye into the divisional final.
That game will be held in BC Place Stadium on Nov. 20, along with the 99th Grey Cup the following Sunday.
The Eskimos missed their chance to clinch first place there last week, dropping a 29-20 decision to the Lions, who clinched with a win over the two-time defending-champion Montreal Alouettes on Saturday.
But Reed chose not to watch that game, opting instead to take in some NCAA football with the LSU-Alabama tilt.
“It never works out the way you want whenever someone else controls your destiny,” Reed said.