TORONTO -- The Toronto Argonauts' failure to finish drives would have driven fans to drink, had any adult beverages been available for sale.
A time-count violation with 26 seconds left, which pushed kicker Justin Medlock 10 yards back for a game-winning field-goal try, led to his 57-yard try hitting the left goalpost to sum up a 13-12 loss to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
That summed up a day when the Argos and a sun-splashed crowd of 23,821 was faced with dry taps due to a penalty for liquor licence violations.
The Argos (2-3) lost their eighth consecutive home game, a team record. They had seven turnovers, including four Kerry Joseph interceptions.
"The single biggest factor was the seven turnovers," coach Bart Andrus said. "Quarterbacks are going to throw interceptions. We don't want it to happen and we coach against it. Sometimes they make poor decisions, sometimes it gets deflected, sometimes it hits the receiver and pops out. We had all of those things happen.
"We put the ball in our best players' hands and we have to coach them out of it."
Wasted was another fine performance by the Argos defence, which limited the Bombers to just a field goal on the turnovers.
Ex-Argo Michael Bishop was recruited in a hurry by the Bombers after an embarrassing loss to Toronto in Winnipeg last week, but the Argos held him in check after he threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to Terrence Edwards in the first quarter.
Joseph completed 20-of-32 passes for 219 yards, but he is not getting enough done.
"The defence, we've got to help those guys," Joseph said. "Those guys have been playing their tails off. Now, offensively, we've got to carry our load."
Alexis Serna kicked a 48-yard field goal with just over four minutes to play to put the Bombers (2-3) ahead for good.
Chad Lucas, in his first game with the Argos, caught a 25-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter, representing the only passing touchdown the Argos have had in three games. But Lucas and Hank Edwards had two catchable balls from Joseph bounce off their bodies and into the hands of Bombers defenders.
Siddeeq Shabazz had two picks for Winnipeg, giving him four of the Bombers' league-leading 13. They had 15 all of last season.
Both the Argos and Bombers should be concerned that the Hamilton Tiger-Cats (3-2) appear to have turned the corner to respectability.
Argos LB Willie Pile was not about to dump on the offence, which gained 376 yards.
"When it's the reverse, we will need them to pick up the slack," Pile said. "They don't separate the wins and losses based on defence, offence and special teams. We're going to ride this together."