LB's don't let spat get in way of win

KIRK PENTON -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 10:43 AM ET

Lamar McGriggs and Ryland Wickman had a big-time spat going last night in the first quarter.

They quickly made up -- and then made the Ottawa Renegades pay.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers defence, with mainstays McGriggs and Wickman leading the way, allowed only one touchdown -- and it came late -- in their 38-17 thrashing of the Renegades at Canad Inns Stadium.

The veteran Bomber linebackers didn't let their little disagreement get in the way.

"This is my brother, man," McGriggs said, with one of head coach Jim Daley's game balls at his feet. "We always have one (argument) a year. I don't know when it's going to come, but we always have one of those. Once we get it out of our system, we're like brothers, man.

"We've been here together so long. It was just a little mistake where we were seeing two different things. We always come together, and we finally figured it out."

Wickman admitted he was in the wrong.

"It was my fault," the middle linebacker said. "I got on him, and he freaked, but he got pumped up and had a good-ass game.

"I probably had one of my worst games of the year, but we won, so we'll take it and come back next week and play better."

On three occasions last night, quarterback Kerry Joseph and the Renegades were either first-and-goal or first-and-10 from inside Winnipeg's 15-yard line.

The Bombers didn't allow them in the end zone once. The Renegades actually had more total offence than the Bombers (418-395), but they didn't have much to show for it.

"The bottom line is you gotta try to eliminate the big, big plays, and I think we did that tonight," said Bombers defensive back Omar Evans, who returned an interception 40 yards for a touchdown. "Ottawa's a good team, and I'm just happy with the way we performed out there."

Prior to last night's contest, Ottawa led the CFL with a plus-18 mark in the giveaway/takeaway department. However, the Bombers turned the ball over twice yet stole it from the Renegades three times -- all on Joseph interceptions.

"With all the new faces we had, and to have two games like this ... that's huge, man," McGriggs said of the defence's performance.

"I think we can only get better, man. We're really just realizing how good we are."

SCARY MOMENT: Renegades LB Robert Grant was taken to Health Sciences Centre last night after taking a special teams hit from Bombers S Shawn Gallant in the third quarter.

Reports were that Grant had regained feeling in his extremities.

INJURY REPORT: It's believed Bombers SB Keith Stokes (shoulder) and DT Doug Brown (leg) suffered minor injuries last night.


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