Ticats know they gave game away

FRANK ZICARELLI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:49 AM ET

HAMILTON — Kevin Glenn would take many hits, the predictable inevitability when one plays the quarterback position, but it was the hit to his reputation that will sting and linger well into the off-season.

In CFL circles, Glenn is known as the quarterback who can’t win the big one, a knock that gets perpetuated when opportunities aren’t capitalized.

Whether it’s fair or unfair is beside the point, but Glenn’s inability to help the Ticats put points on the scoreboard hurt even more than the blow he took in the opening half when Ricky Foley knocked Glenn, albeit temporarily, out of the game.

Two Glenn interceptions were part of a five-turnover afternoon by the Ticats, who wasted yet another shot of playing in the Eastern final in losing 16-13 to the Argos.

The Argos offence was so ugly that 13 of the visitors’ points were the direct result of Hamilton’s turnovers.

While the Argos played the perfect game, despite the ugly passing numbers, the Ticats were imperfect in virtually all aspects, be it special teams, defence and offence.

When he was asked to rank this latest defeat in a career dotted with stellar moments, Glenn had to compose himself.

“High,’’ Glenn would begin as tears began to well in his eyes. “It’s high to where it hurts. It really, really hurts. I can’t even explain it to you right now.”

It’s pretty hard to explain the unexplainable and the inexcusable that was Sunday’s setback.

On paper, the only way the Ticats could miss out on their ticket to Montreal and next Sunday’s Eastern final was to shoot themselves in the foot.

On paper, the only way the Argos could upset a team that they couldn’t beat in three regular-season meetings was to control the clock by running the ball and winning the turnover battle.

The Argos have to find a way to develop a passing game in the days leading up to next Sunday, but in Hamilton they executed to perfection an offensive game plan that was as obvious as a Sandro DeAngelis field goal that hit the upright.

Defensively, Rich Stubler’s famed bend but don’t break approach was fully on display, yielding yards but making plays when plays had to be made.

Foley’s hit on Glenn didn’t appear to have any malice, but at the same it didn’t appear to be a football play.

“It’s like he grabbed the back of my shoulder pads and was trying to drag me down,’’ added Glenn, who would pass for 314 yards, almost triple Lemon’s total. “I mean, the ball was thrown and it was out of my hands and in the air for a while.”

Glenn would come back and would nearly lead the Ticats to a comeback until an attempted pass to Arland Bruce III on what would turn out to be the game’s penultimate was picked off by Byron Parker.

Bruce, Hamilton’s sure-handed playmaker, couldn’t come up with the completion and neither could he make a play in the corner of the end zone.

“One play doesn’t decide a game,’’ Glenn said.

But one more missed opportunity in a big moment just adds to the reputation that followed Glenn to Hamilton, where, under similar circumstances a year ago, the Ticats failed to get over the semifinal hump.

“We beat ourselves,’’ defensive end Stevie Baggs said in pretty much summarizing the mood in Tiger-town. “We know we’re the better team. They (Argos) were better than us (Sunday).

“If a team beats you by going up and down the field, it’s one thing. But we lost by default.”

frank.zicarelli@sunmedia.ca


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