Ottawa Redblacks defensive lineman Michael Wakefield (96) tries to sack Calgary Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell (19) during the first half of the 106th Grey Cup at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Sunday, November 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Ottawa Redblacks defensive lineman Michael Wakefield (96) tries to sack Calgary Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell (19) during the first half of the 106th Grey Cup at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Sunday, November 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Mitchell named MVP as Stampeders dump Redblacks 27-16 to win Grey Cup

Calgary captures CFL crown after dropping previous two title games

Terry Williams helped the Calgary Stampeders end their Grey Cup misery.

Williams had a record 97-yard punt-return touchdown on a slippery Commonwealth Stadium turf Sunday night to lead Calgary past the Ottawa Redblacks 27-16 in the Grey Cup.

Calgary finally won the CFL title in its third straight appearance. The Stampeders lost 39-33 in overtime to Ottawa in 2016 before dropping a 27-24 decision last year to the Toronto Argonauts.

Calgary quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell — the CFL’s most outstanding player this season after tossing a league-best 35 TDs — was the game MVP with two touchdown passes but also two interceptions. Stampeders receiver Lemar Durant was named the outstanding Canadian with four catches for 30 yards and a TD and a 22-yard run.

Ottawa — in its third Grey Cup in four years — appeared to score on Greg Ellingson’s acrobatic one-handed grab in the fourth quarter but replays showed the ball hit the turf. The Redblacks ended up turning the ball over on downs at the Calgary seven-yard line with just over eight minutes remaining.

After Ottawa turned the ball over on downs again, Calgary’s Jamar Wall and Tre Roberson followed up with interceptions on consecutive Redblacks possessions. Roberson’s pick came with 1:22 to play.

Calgary players will receive the $16,000 winner’s share while the Redblacks get $8,000 apiece.

A Commonwealth Stadium gathering of 55,819 watched the opening kickoff in 1 C conditions with an 11 kilometre-an-hour wind. But the field proved to be the story of the game.

On Saturday, several Calgary players said the turf was hard and slippery and footwear would be important. During the pre-game warmups, many Stampeders wore shoes featuring short, traditional turf cleats or those with a flat rubber sole.

Ottawa head coach Rick Campbell downplayed the field conditions.

“It’s alright, it is what it is,” he said before the game. “It’s the CFL.”

But it became apparent early footing would be an issue. That was especially clear with 38 seconds left in the first quarter when Williams had both feet slip from beneath him while returning a missed 47-yard Lewis Ward field goal try.

Rene Paredes put Calgary ahead 27-14 with a 29-yard field goal at 2:54 of the fourth. It was set up by Wynton McManis’s recovery of Diontae Spencer’s fumble on a punt return at the Ottawa 25-yard line.

Calgary went into the fourth leading 24-14 thanks to Paredes’s 34-yard field goal at 11:24 of the third. It came after Ward’s 41-yard boot at 7:56.

Don Jackson had Calgary’s other TD. Paredes booted the converts and two field goals.

Julian Feoli-Gudino had Ottawa’s touchdown. Jean-Christophe Beaulieu added a two-point convert while Ward booted two field goals.

Williams provided the first half’s biggest play, a Grey Cup-record 97-yard punt return TD at 14:59 of the second. After taking the ball, Williams nearly slipped heading upfield but an Ottawa defender engaged with a blocker slid on by, allowing Williams to hit the open field, then run past punter Richie Leone to put Calgary ahead 21-11.

Williams provided the entertainment factor in an otherwise sloppy opening half. The two teams combined for four turnovers (three picks and a fumble), some ugly drops and eight punts.

Mitchell was 14-of-21 passing for 182 yards and two TDs with two interceptions. Redblacks quarterback Trevor Harris never seemed to be in any rhythm despite having time to look downfield, completing 8-of-17 passes for 132 yards with a touchdown and interception.

Ottawa’s most consistent offensive weapon was William Powell, who ran nine times for 58 yards while sporting bring neon orange shoes before changing to white ones at halftime. But the CFL’s second-leading rusher also had a costly fumble at the Calgary 28 in the second to end a Redblacks’ scoring threat with the team trailing 14-3.

Ottawa pulled to within five at 14-9 on Harris’s 55-yard TD strike at 12:45 to Feoli-Gudino, who broke two tackles after the catch. Harris then found Beaulieu on the two-point convert.

Mitchell put Calgary ahead 14-3 with a 17-yard TD strike to Durant at 6:50. It came two plays after Durant dropped a wide-open screen pass.

RELATED: Calgary QB earns second CFL most outstanding player award

Ward — the CFL’s top rookie and special teams player this season — connected from 30 yards out at 2:28 after a rare miss from 47 yards out in the first. Ward made 51-of-52 field goals this regular season, including a record 48 straight that will carry over into 2019.

Jackson’s 21-yard TD catch opened the scoring at 10:46 of the first. With Ottawa coming on a blitz, Jackson took Mitchell’s screen pass and scored easily.

NOTES: Stampeders coach Dave Dickenson said Sunday eight Calgary players were stuck in an elevator Saturday night for an hour and 15 minutes. A coach was involved and Dickenson said he had to buy lunch for that member of his staff … Dickenson said ‘a little bug’ worked its way through his players — including Mitchell — and coaches this week. Dickenson was confident the worst was over and added when he played quarterback he performed better when he wasn’t feeling well. He was hopeful that would be the case Sunday. TSN reported six Ottawa players, including linebacker Chris Ackie and cornerback Sherrod Baltimore, battled sickness this week.

THE CANADIAN PRESS

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CFL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Calgary Stampeders running back Terry Williams (38) celebrates a punt return touchdown against the Ottawa Redblacks with teammate defensive back Tunde Adeleke (27) during the first half of the 106th Grey Cup in Edmonton, Alta. Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Calgary Stampeders running back Terry Williams (38) celebrates a punt return touchdown against the Ottawa Redblacks with teammate defensive back Tunde Adeleke (27) during the first half of the 106th Grey Cup in Edmonton, Alta. Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Just Posted

This Dec. 2, 2020, file photo provided by Johnson & Johnson shows vials of the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. (Johnson & Johnson via AP)
Interior Health notes 80 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend

108 people in the region have died from the virus

The Fraser River is seen west of Williams Lake from Doc English Bluff Ecological Reserve. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
Tsilhqot’in National Government appeals Gibraltar Mines’ permit to discharge into Fraser River

Permit amendments fail to adequately protect the environment and human health, says TNG

The Horsefly Community Hall will be the site of a mobile vaccine clinic March 19, 2021. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Six COVID-19 vaccine clinics to open in Cariboo Chilcotin

100 Mile, Alexis Creek, Big Lake, Horsefly, Williams Lake and Tatla Lake

A Williams Lake area family living on Knife Creek Road lost everything to a house fire on Wednesday, March 3. (Photo submitted)
House fire destroys rural family home south of Williams Lake

The Macdonalds built their home on Knife Creek Road about 30 years ago

A special committee has been appointed to look at reforming B.C.’s police act and is inviting the public to make submissions until April 30, 2021. (Black Press media file)
Public input sought for B.C.’s police act review

Submissions will be accepted until April 30

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Cottonwoods Care Home in Kelowna. (Google Maps)
New COVID-19 outbreak at Kelowna care home includes fully vaccinated seniors: Henry

Two staff and 10 residents tested positive at Cottonwoods Care Centre

Excerpts from a conversation between Bria Fisher and the fake truLOCAL job. Fisher had signed a job agreement and was prepared to start work for what she thought was truLOCAL before she learned it was a scam. (Contributed)
B.C. woman warning others after losing $3,000 in job scam

Bria Fisher was hired by what she thought was a Canadian company, only to be out thousands

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix provide a regular update on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, March 2, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 cases: 545 Saturday, 532 Sunday, 385 Monday

Focus on Prince Rupert, Lower Mainland large workplaces

Rising accident rates and payout costs have contributed to billion-dollar deficits at ICBC. (Comox Valley Record)
B.C. appealing decision keeping ICBC injury cases in court

David Eby vows to โ€˜clip wingsโ€™ of personal injury lawyers

(Black Press Media files)
Hosts charged, attendees facing COVID fines after Vancouver police bust party at condo

Police had previously received 10 complaints about that condo

Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen takes part in an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. A joint federal and B.C. government housing program announced today aims to help people living in up to 25,000 vulnerable households pay their rent. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Federal, B.C. governments announce $517-million rent aid program to help vulnerable

Benefits for those not eligible for B.C.โ€™s Rental Assistance Program or Shelter Aid for Elderly Renters

Most Read