Stamps booted in B.C.

Stampeders running back Rob Cote is knocked down by Lions linebacker Solomon Elimimian at BC Place...

Stampeders running back Rob Cote is knocked down by Lions linebacker Solomon Elimimian at BC Place in Vancouver, B.C., Oct. 8, 2011. (ANDY CLARK/Reuters)

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 3:36 AM ET

VANCOUVER - They fumbled on the first play, allowed a 104-yard TD drive and watched helplessly as the opposing kicker set a league record.

In the dying minutes, the Calgary Stampeders still had the lead, thanks to a 122-yard missed field goal return touchdown by the dynamic Larry Taylor.

All it set up was more drama.

Paul McCallum, the B.C. Lions’ ageless 41-year-old kicker, stepped up and nailed a 53-yard field goal for a 33-31 victory as time expired Saturday night.

McCallum fell to the turf at new B.C. Place Stadium and was mobbed by teammates as the crowd of 30,622 went wild.

Just another night in the CFL.

“I knew what I did wrong on the kick before,” said McCallum of the 45-yard attempt Taylor took back. “So I knew what I had to do right.”

The Lions (8-6) extended their win streak to seven games and take over top spot in the West Division.

The Stampeders now need some help from the Saskatchewan Roughriders Monday to maintain second spot in the West Division. If the Riders lose to the Edmonton Eskimos (7-6), the Stamps will drop to third place in the division.

It was a wild, good old-fashioned shootout but it looked like the Stamps would escape new B.C. Place with a victory.

Before Taylor’s return TD, things looked to be falling apart for the Stamps while down 30-25 in the dying minutes of the fourth quarter.

Henry Burris pulled the ball from Jon Cornish’s mitts and promptly put the ball on the turf. Lions linebacker James Yurichuk kicked the loose ball forward and recovered it to put the Lions in position for McCallum.

McCallum drew a standing ovation earlier for breaking Dave Ridgway’s CFL-record of 28 consecutive field goals.

Going for No. 31 from 45 yards out (after he was good from 47, 46 and 20) was disaster.

Taylor turned on the jets and weaved his way through Lions tacklers for the lead. The Stamps failed on two two-point conversion attempts.

“It felt good,” Taylor said. “As a returner, when you are in a zone and those guys up front believe in you and are working your butt off, that’s what it’s all about.”

Burris had two fumbles in the game, but did have some shining moments. He hit Landan Talley on a 81-yard touchdown pass.

Talley, who was replacing Ken-Yon Rambo (Achilles), had two passes knocked down earlier by Lions defensive back Tad Kornegay. The sophomore managed to slip behind Kornegay’s coverage and won the footrace to the endzone.

Cornish scored on a five-yard scamper as well, making the Lions pay for Tim Brown’s fumble off a Rene Paredes missed field goal return.

Things couldn’t have started worse for the Stamps.

Former Stampeder defensive end Keron Williams drilled Burris right off the first snap, knocking the ball loose for the Lions to recover.

Before they knew it, they were down 14-0 thanks to a 104-yard drive engineered by Lions quarterback Travis Lulay, who found Shawn Gore open behind coverage for a 49-yard gain.

Lulay threw TD passes to Arland Bruce and Geroy Simon before the Stamps responded.

The most important pass Lulay threw though was a 17-yarder to Bruce with just 14 seconds left in the game, setting up the winning field goal.

“Him buying time and finding the receiver, he was able to win the game for them,” said Stampeders defensive back Brandon Smith. “We have to play better than this. We have to get back to the drawing board. We have to go over the game and correct some things. We can’t be giving away any more of these games.”


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