Mistakes cost Bombers season-opener to Argos

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:48 AM ET

WINNIPEG -- Doug Berry, looking sleep deprived like he always does the day after a game, emerged from his office yesterday afternoon to find out the sky hadn't fallen, the sun had come up, and it wasn't the end of the world as he knew it.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers' 23-16 loss to the rival Toronto Argonauts in their home opener Friday night was just one game.

Sure, there were mistakes. And yes, he will do everything in his power to correct them for Game 2 Friday night in Montreal against the Alouettes (1-0).

"It was a close football game against a very good football team," the head coach said after reviewing the game film. "We had an opportunity maybe to win the game.

"If we had done a couple more things we probably could've come away with a win, but we were not able to get it done. It's up to us to now find out a way to get it done."

The story for the Blue and Gold against the Argos was a mostly solid defensive effort ruined by a lack of offensive finish and one major special teams disaster -- Alexis Serna's fumble and blocked punt that led to an Argos score.

Bombers quarterback Kevin Glenn had nearly twice as many passing yards (321) than the Argos duo of Kerry Joseph and Michael Bishop (184), but three fourth-quarter interceptions put a dent in the comeback plans.

"Kevin played pretty well, actually," Berry said. "The last interception, let's not count that one. The one before that was more or less a receiver adjusting that fooled the quarterback. He was fooled.

"He played a decent game. It certainly wasn't his best game, but it was an OK game."

The Winnipeg offence was left wondering after twice getting inside Toronto's 20-yard line in the first half but settling for Serna field goals instead.

Berry attributed that struggle to two new receivers (Romby Bryant and Kerry Johnson), a third in a new position (Arjei Franklin) and a fourth pass catcher missing in action (Milt Stegall).

"Are we calling the right plays? Are we calling our best offence in those situations? It looks like we are," Berry said. "We're missing a big guy down there ... we're not quite synched up yet.

"It takes the offence a bit more than the defence. This is game one, and we're just not where we want to be nor expect to be."

Glenn served up a career-high three interceptions for only the second time in his eight years in the league; the other was in the meaningless 2005 season finale against the Calgary Stampeders.


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