The three-game winning streak in BC is over. The Ti-Cats did their best to overcome a 15-point fourth-quarter deficit, but a late rally fell just short. It was a game that started great, got really ugly in the middle and then ended with the team looking like they've flipped a switch.
Another week, another electrifying performance from Chevon Walker. I know they call him "Chevy," but I'm starting to wonder if they should call him "The Rock" because he sure looks like the most electrifying man in all of sports. Walker put up 154 yards from scrimmage, highlighted by a 95-yard catch and run for a touchdown. Walker had two TDs on the night and while it may only be two games, Walker has to be the leader at this point for top rookie.
Despite not being able to come up with a stop when the team needed it, the Tiger-Cat defense actually played a really good game. The Lions may have scored 39 points, but 14 of those points came directly from mistakes from other units (a punt return for a touchdown and an interception that led to a one-yard touchdown). There were a few near interceptions (and one called back on a somewhat dubious penalty) and while they didn't register a sack, they did put some pressure on Travis Lulay. It was the type of game the defense can build on.
It is beginning to look more and more like Chris Williams is the team's best weapon. A two touchdown performance, one via a punt return and one on a pass by Henry Burris, as well as close to 150 all-purpose yards. Another solid outing from last year's top rookie.
The turning point of the game came when the Lions scored two touchdowns in the span of about 20 seconds and on of those touchdowns came on an 81-yard punt return by Tim Brown. The Hamilton coverage units could not stop Brown last night as he tallied close to 300 yards on punt and kick returns. With Chad Owens next on deck, the Ti-Cats will need to find a way to shore up this part of the team.
Marwan Hage went down with an injury in the first half and did not return. The injury was not related to his ACL injury from last year, but it was still a scary site to see Hage walking off the field with the trainers.
We all know that George Cortez is an offensive genius, but his decision making in his first two games as head coach has left a lot to be desired. He inexplicably threw a challenge flag on a very clear fumble by Dave Stala, and while he might have had an itchy trigger finger after not challenging the Weston Dressler catch that wasn't a catch last week, there was no way he should have called for a challenge. He's going to get some leeway since this is his first go-around as head man, but that slack won't last much longer.
There are no thing as moral victories in professional football, but the Ti-Cats did look like a much better team last night than they did a week ago. While the offense seemed to disappear for about two quarters, the defense held them in there as well as they could until the offense finally awoke from its slumber. A three-point loss to the defending champions at home is not what you want, but considering the Cats were down 19 midway through the third quarter, it might have been the best they could hope for.
The Ti-Cats still have some areas they need to work on, but they can take the positives from this game and hopefully finally put it all together a week from now when they host the Argos. If the Hamilton team that played BC last night shows up to play the Argos next week, it's going to be a bloodbath in favour of the home side. The team might be 0-2, but they look like they are headed in the right direction.