Penalty-prone Eskimos squander 10-point lead, lose to Lions in BC - Canadanewsmedia
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Penalty-prone Eskimos squander 10-point lead, lose to Lions in BC

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B.C. Lions' Shawn Lemon (9), Jordan Herdman (53) and Davon Coleman (90) tackle Edmonton Eskimos' C.J. Gable, front, during first half CFL football action in Vancouver on Aug. 9, 2018.


DARRYL DYCK / THE CANADIAN PRESS

VANCOUVER — The Edmonton Eskimos saw the end of a three-game win streak with a 31-23 loss to the B.C. Lions at BC Place on Thursday.

The 17,745 in attendance saw the Eskimos fall to their first West Division opponent of the season, while dropping to 5-3 on the season as their grip slips on second place.

The Lions, meanwhile, improved to 3-5 as they pulled themselves out of the West basement to draw even with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, who are on a bye week.

Trailing by eight points with 89 seconds left on the clock, Edmonton took one last gasp with a 41-yard reception by Derel Walker into Lions territory, only to have former Eskimos defensive back Garry Peters come up with an interception in the end zone, as the Eskimos squandered a 10-point halftime lead in another penalty-filled affair.

Mike Reilly completed 25 of 40 passes for 299 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions, while his Lions counterpart Travis Lulay completed 16 of 29 passes for 239 yards, a touchdown and an interception.

Edmonton scored an opening-possession touchdown for the second time this season, as C.J. Gable ran for carries of 19 and 14 yards, contributing to an eight-play, 71-yard drive that ended in a 10-yard touchdown pass to Nate Behar to lead 7-0.

It was the first Canadian Football League touchdown for the Carleton product, taken in the first round (fifth overall) in the 2017 draft.

B.C.’s opening drive was stifled when defensive tackle Mike Moore sacked Lulay, who had been tackled behind the line of scrimmage just once in his three previous starts this season.


Edmonton Eskimos’ Derel Walker, left, makes a reception in the end zone to score a touchdown as B.C. Lions’ T.J. Lee watches during first half CFL football action in Vancouver on Aug. 9, 2018.

DARRYL DYCK /

THE CANADIAN PRESS

With it, Moore, playing in his first game since injuring his leg in the season opener, contributed to Edmonton’s league-leading 18 sacks on the year, while the Lions hadn’t allowed a sack in their previous two games.

But the Lions got on the board in the final minute of the opening quarter after a 39-yard shovel pass to Emmanuel Arceneaux set up a 25-yard field goal by Ty Long.

Set up for a 46-yard field goal attempt by Sean Whyte at the other end of the field, holder Danny O’Brien moved under centre to complete a 16-yard pass to defensive tackle Almondo Sewell.

The trick kick led to a nine-play, 75-yard drive that ended with Reilly diving in a one-yard QB keeper for his league-leading seventh rushing touchdown to lead 14-3.

But the special-teams gods giveth, and the special-teams gods taketh away, as Chris Rainey returned a Hugh O’Neill punt 79 yards to the end zone for his fourth punt-return touchdown of his career to shrink Edmonton’s lead to four points with 8:40 left in the half.

Odell Willis came up with the 91st sack of his career as he got to former teammate Reilly for the first time since an off-season trade sent him to Vancouver via Ottawa.

While Darius Allen got a sack back for the Eskimos on the ensuing drive, Lulay followed up with a 36-yard pass to Kevin Elliott, setting up what would have been a touchdown reception by Bryan Burnham barring a holding penalty.

Lulay’s next snap went 70 yards the other way on an interception by linebacker Korey Jones, who was tripped up 15 yards shy of the end zone by the Lions quarterback.

Derel Walker covered the rest of the distance with a reception to take a 20-10 lead with 2:18 left in the half, as Whyte’s point-after attempt went wide left.

With cornerback Nick Taylor leaving briefly in the third quarter with an arm injury, his replacement, Jordan Hoover, was picked on during a six-play, 72-yard drive that ended with a nine-yard touchdown catch by Kevin Elliott.

B.C. tied it up 20-20 midway through the third on a  career-long 51-yard field goal by Long, before punting one into the end zone to take a 21-20 lead into the final frame.

After the Eskimos finally earned their first first-down of the second half, Otha Foster recovered a sack-fumble he forced at Edmonton’s eight yard-line.

Former Eskimos running back Travon Van, making his first start in B.C.’s backfield since his off-season release, ran one in the rest of the way for a 27-20 lead.

Following a 40-yard field goal by Whyte, it was Edmonton’s turn to recover a sack fumble, compliments of Kwaku Boateng, to take over at B.C.’s 39 yard-line.

But Reilly’s next pass was tipped by Otha Foster and intercepted by Winston Rose, who returned it 55 yards to set up another Lions field goal.

The Eskimos are home to Johnny Manziel and the Montreal Alouettes on Saturday, Aug. 18 (7 p.m., TSN, ESPN+, 630 CHED).

On Twitter: @GerryModdejonge

Email: gmoddejonge@postmedia.com

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Robert Wickens sustains pulmonary contusion in scary crash at IndyCar Pocono race

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Canadian IndyCar driver Robert Wickens was airlifted to a hospital and was being treated for injuries to his lower extremities, right arm and spine following an accident early in the race. IndyCar said Wickens sustained a pulmonary contusion and will undergo an MRI and probable surgery at Lehigh Valley Hospital Cedar Crest in Allentown.

The driver from Guelph, Ont., was attempting to pass Ryan Hunter-Reay during the ABC Supply 500 at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond when the two cars slightly touched. That caused Hunter-Reay's car to careen into the wall, and Wickens's car was pulled along for the ride.

Watch the crash here:

Guelph, Ontario's Robert Wickens was taken to hospital after a violent crash at the IndyCar ABC Supply 500. Teammate and fellow Canadian James Hinchcliffe was also involved in the crash. 1:35

Wickens launched over Hunter-Reay's car and sailed into the catchfence, where the tub of his IndyCar spun several times before crashing back onto the track.

Medical workers at the Pocono Raceway calmly attended to Wickens, who was taken to an ambulance before he was transported to a helicopter. The impact of the wreck tore out a large section of fencing.

Curt Cavin, the vice-president of communications for IndyCar, said on the TV broadcast that Wickens was "awake and alert" and transported to Lehigh Valley Hospital.

Canadian James Hinchcliffe and Takuma Sato were among the other drivers involved in the wreck.

'That's the worst thing you can see'

Hinchcliffe, of Oakville, Ont., seemed to be in pain, grabbing his wrists as he slowly left his car. Hinchcliffe was cleared and released from the medical centre. He declined to comment to reporters out of respect for Wickens.

"That's the worst thing you can see. He's hurt. He's awake and alert and at least he's alive," driver Sebastien Bourdais said.

The race was delayed nearly two hours and only eight laps in the 500-mile (about 805-kilometre) race had been completed because of Wickens's crash and another accident right before green.

Pocono Raceway president Ben May said about 24 metres of fence and a few posts were damaged in the wreck.

The Pocono staff needed about two hours to repair the track and make it safe for the rest of the race.

Hinchcliffe is a teammate of Wickens on the all-Canadian team. The two raced each other as youngsters in Toronto and Hinchcliffe, runner-up on ABC's Dancing With The Stars in 2017, helped lure Wickens to IndyCar this season after a successful career in Europe.

Grim reminder

The crash was a grim reminder how drivers in open-wheel racing put their lives on the line.

Hinchcliffe survived his own life-threatening injury when a broken part from his car pierced an artery during a 2015 crash at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Hinchcliffe would have bled to death if not for the medical team holding the artery together as it raced him from the track directly to a hospital.

A year earlier, Hinchcliffe suffered a concussion when he was hit in the helmet by a piece of debris on the road course at Indianapolis.

Wickens had reeled off five straight top-five finishes and matched a career-best second in the last race at Mid-Ohio.

Briton Justin Wilson died from a head injury in 2015 when a piece of debris from a crashed car bounced off the track at Pocono Raceway and hit his helmet.

Alexander Rossi won the race, but his thoughts were with Wickens.
 
"It's tough to really celebrate after what happened," Rossi told reporters.

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Barrett has 23 points, 11 assists as Duke routs McGill in Canadian tour finale

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R.J. Barrett didn’t disappoint in his third and final showing on Duke University’s exhibition tour of Canada.

The 18-year-old from Mississauga had 23 points and 11 assists in the Blue Devils’ 103-58 dismantling of McGill University on Sunday.

Zion Williamson shouldered the scoring load for Duke, after Barrett led the way in the first two games, putting up a game-high 36 points along with 13 rebounds.

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Alex Paquin was the only McGill player in double figures with 29 points.

Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski said the Redmen came out like they “thought they were going to win,” but their skill deficit was too much to overcome as Barrett and Williamson were a “cut above everyone who’s on the court.”

“We obviously have more talent, but we’re young. R.J. and Zion are 18. Alex Paquin is 24, he’s really good and he’s a man. That’s one of the things when we get to NCAA play, we have to beat teams that have juniors, seniors, or even graduate transfers. So that balances sometimes the talent aspect,” Krzyzewski said.

“Our guys didn’t fall into that trap, I thought they shared the ball. R.J. had 10 assists. They share it. The first half, we really had to play well. In the second half, we pulled away. I thought we played team ball throughout and really kept up our defence.”

Barrett said McGill was trying to shut him down offensively, so he decided to focus on distributing the ball.

“It’s just the ability to read the game and they were trying to take away from me scoring,” he said.

“I was playing against one of my former coaches who knows what I do, so he was trying to limit me from scoring, which left my teammates wide open and I was able to find them today,” he added, referring to McGill head coach David DeAveiro, who coached Barrett for two years with the Canadian national cadet team.

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Krzyzewski said that it was Barrett’s well-rounded game and good attitude that made him such an appealing prospect, and these traits have become even more apparent since he’s joined Duke.

“He’s great in all aspects. When we recruit a kid, we look for talent, a good student and character. He’s off the charts in all three,” he said.

“He comes from a family that has amazing character. He’s represented your country at different every level and he’s done that with class, dignity and talent. He’s way ahead. I’ve found him to be more of a competitor. He does not like to lose. He’s an outstanding defender and he can lock you up. He’s a leader and a great kid to be around. I love him. I loved him before this trip, but now that we’ve had nine practices and three games, we know our guys a little bit better. He’s a stud in every way.”

Canadian basketball phenom R.J. Barrett says he got to show his Duke teammates “where I’m from” when the team took a Lake Ontario boat cruise. The Blue Devils face Ryerson on Wednesday in the first of three pre-season games in Canada. The Canadian Press

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LEADING OFF: Gregorius hurt, Stanton in Miami, Felix starts

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A look at what’s happening around the majors Monday:

AILING

The Yankees will see how shortstop Didi Gregorius is feeling, a day after he bruised his left heel in a collision while beating out an infield hit. Gregorius was hurt when he tumbled over Toronto first baseman Kendrys Morales.

Gregorius is batting .270 with 22 home runs and 74 RBIs, and has 48 extra-base hits this season.

“It’s something that we’ll monitor over the next 24 hours, could potentially be a DL thing,” manager Aaron Boone said.

CHECK HIM

Cubs pitcher Yu Darvish had another setback in his injury-interrupted year, increasing speculation he might be done for the season. Darvish lasted just one inning in his rehab start with Class A South Bend on Sunday.

Darvish has been sidelined by triceps and elbow injuries, and shook his right arm as he left the field. The 32-year-old is 1-3 with a 4.95 ERA for Chicago and has made just eight starts since signing a $126 million, six-year contract.

VICTORY LANE

Indians ace Corey Kluber and Boston right-hander Rick Porcello start when Cleveland visits Fenway Park to begin a four-game matchup between AL division leaders. If either Kluber (15-6, 2.68 ERA) or Porcello (15-5, 4.04) get the victory, they would tie Washington’s Max Scherzer and the Yankees’ Luis Severino for the major league wins lead.

REMEMBER ME?

Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton plays at Marlins Park for the first time since Miami traded the 2017 NL MVP in December. Stanton played his first eight seasons with the Marlins, and led the majors with 59 home runs last year. Stanton has hit 32 this year for New York, giving him a career total of 299.

“It’s going to be weird for sure walking in, going to the visitors’ side,” Stanton said. “But I am looking forward to it. It’s a big part of my life, my time down there. It will be a cool experience.”

FIT FOR A KING

Felix Hernandez returns to Seattle’s rotation, a week after the only relief appearance of his career. The longtime Mariners ace (8-11, 5.62 ERA) was recently bumped to the bullpen after a series of shaky starts. He threw 5 2/3 innings of relief last Tuesday after James Paxton was forced to leave when he was hit in the pitching arm by a line drive. Hernandez will start in Paxton’s place when the M’s host Gerrit Cole (11-5, 2.71) and the Astros.

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