CALGARY — Anyone who watches CFL football knows that the last three minutes of the game are usually the most exciting, and that was exactly the case on Thursday night.
Things came to a head between the Montreal Alouettes and the Calgary Stampeders as Rene Paredes broke the tie with less than a minute left, giving the Stampeders a 30-27 win at McMahon Stadium.
“First of all, what a game,” Stampeders quarterback Jake Maier said to TSN’s Sara Orlesky after the contest. “What a game. All three stages. We played up and down at times in all three stages but we were resilient at the end and that’s why you play the game.
“It comes down to the last few moments, really a couple of key games at the end. Obviously we forced turnovers today, we had good special teams, we blocked a kick. We made the games when we needed to. As for me, I always say if my number is called, I’m ready.”
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Maier’s number was called late in the fourth quarter when Stampeders starting quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell left with an apparent injury. With Mitchell on the touchline and a score of 27, it was entirely up to Maier to put his team in goal position. After both teams traded punts, Maier moved the chains and was able to help set up Paredes’ game-winning field goal.
“It’s great to give our fans a great show,” said Maier about the win at McMahon. “Just having their support, but the CFL season, as you know, is a season marathon. We’re going to celebrate tonight, we’re having a nice long weekend, (we’re going to) be able to catch up and watch other teams play. (We’ll) take it for what it’s worth, it’s a game and we could play better and we will.
McMahon fans were treated to an exciting game from their home team and big plays from all three periods. Running back Ka’Deem Carey hit two rushing touchdowns while defensive lineman Mike Rose blocked the field goal and caught an interception. Linebacker Jameer Thurman also got in on the action and hit a pass himself.
“We faced adversity very early on, but we stuck together,” Carey told TSN’s Orlesky. “We knew our talent, we knew what we could do and we went out and we played as a family and we got the win.”
Next up is a trip east for the Stampeders to take on the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Saturday night. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. ET at Tim Hortons Field.