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article imageCFL: Montreal wins home opener

By Joseph DeClara     Jul 23, 2010 in Sports
Montreal - The Alouettes improve to 3-1 in front of a sold out crowd of 25,012 in their home opener at the newly expanded Percival Molson Stadium.
The game was well in hand by the time Montreal scored their first touchdown in over 115 minutes. Duval kicked seven field goals, tying a Montreal record, and the Montreal defence forced three turnovers, and blocked a punt in the 3rd quarter to propel Montreal to a 37-14 victory over the Hamilton Tiger Cats.
Calvillo was 28 for 38 in completions with 309 yards passing but was again unable to score from the red zone in the first three quarters. In the 3rd quarter, a Kevin Glenn fumble, forced by John Bowman, put the Alouettes on the Hamilton 22-yard line. A short time later Michael Giffin blocked a John Parlady punt and chased it down to the Hamilton 16-yard line. Both Montreal drives resulted in field goals.
"Seven field goals -- that's great for Damon's stats, but we need more TDs." Calvillo said, according to TSN.
Finally, in the 4th quarter, Montreal managed a major score when Calvillo hit Kerry Watkins on a 32-yard pass. Hamilton stormed back to score a touchdown of their own, closing the gap to 30-14, but on the very next drive, Calvillo lead his team into the much sought-after end zone for the second time. Calvillo connected with Kerry Carter from six yards out. Not only did Montreal get a rare red zone touchdown, but Calvillo and Avon Cobourne effectively killed much of what was left in the 4th quarter during the 75-yard drive.
Cobourne finished with 55 yards on 8 carries and had another 46 yards receiving on 5 receptions.
Kevin Glenn only completed 50 percent of his passes for 201 yards. Quinton Porter came in late for Hamilton and threw the game's only interception to Shea Emry, as well as Hamilton's only touchdown. It was the Montreal defence that kept the Ti-Cats' offence from making this game close.
Between punishing hits from Etienne Boulay and Emry, and solid coverage from Jerald Brown and Billy Parker, the Montreal secondary frustrated Hamilton until it was too late for Hamilton to do anything about it other than score a meaningless touchdown with 6:30 remaining in the fourth. Chip Cox lead all Alouettes with six tackles including a critical 3rd down stop to end the 3rd quarter.
Montreal's defence plays very physical, which is going to help them win a lot of games, but they also lead the league in pass interference calls. Two more last night gave the Alouettes 11 on the season, the rest of the league has a combined total of only 15. They'll have to improve in this department before it gets the better of them.
Another category that Montreal needs some help in is sacks. Going into the game they had the fewest team sacks in the league but John Bowman was able to change that, getting three sacks against the Ti-Cats. Bowman had help from his secondary whose coverage gave him those few extra seconds that often make the difference between a long completion and a sack.
The 3-1 Alouettes are off to a strong start and host the Toronto Argonauts next week.
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