July 17th, 2024

Ward’s late field goal lifts Redblacks past winless Tiger-Cats 24-22

By Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press on June 30, 2024.

Ottawa Redblacks' quarterback Dru Brown (3) prepares to throw the ball during first half CFL football action against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in Ottawa on Sunday, June 30, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

OTTAWA – A 46-yard field goal by Lewis Ward on the final play of regulation time allowed the Ottawa Redblacks to beat the winless Hamilton Tiger-Cats 24-22 Sunday night.

The victory marked Ottawa’s (2-1) first against an East Division opponent at TD Place since a 24-9 victory over the Toronto Argonauts on Nov. 2, 2018.

It also snapped Hamilton’s (0-4) 10-game winning streak over Ottawa.

Ottawa trailed 22-21 with half a minute to play after quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell – who was 30-for-45 for 322 yards and two touchdowns – drove his Tiger-Cats downfield for a big comeback of his own culminating with a four-yard TD pass to Shemar Bridges.

But the Redblacks were able to get into field goal range setting up Ward – who went 4-for-4 on field goal attempts – for some heroics.

With under four minutes to play DeVonte Dedmon, who made an impact all night long, had a 30-yard punt return to put Ottawa on Hamilton’s 54-yard line.

A couple big runs by Ryquell Armstead put Ottawa at the 15 and then quarterback Dru Brown was able to find Justin Hardy in the end zone for a TD, but the Redblacks failed on their two-point convert, making it 21-16.

Brown had a decent outing going 24-for-39 for 265 yards and one TD.

Hamilton opened the second half with 35- and 42-yard Marc Liegghio field goals to take a 16-12 lead.

Ward brought them back within one with a 42-yard field goal with just over 11 minutes remaining in the game.

Ottawa had a great opportunity to take the lead in the third when Brown connected with Jaelon Acklin for a 35-yard gain, but an illegal block penalty negated the play and pushed Ottawa back to centre field where they were unable to revive the drive and trailed 13-12 heading into the fourth quarter.

Ottawa got off to a rough start with Dedmon fumbling the kick return on the opening play putting Hamilton on the Redblacks’ 30. Two plays later Mitchell connected with Tim White for a 25-yard TD to take a 7-0 lead.

Dedmon redeemed himself on the next return setting Ottawa up at midfield. Brown then compiled a five-play drive to put Ottawa on the one-yard line where Dustin Crum punched in the touchdown. Ward had a rare miss on the convert kicking wide to trail 7-6.

Ottawa took the lead late in the first quarter on a 34-yard Ward field goal but it was short-lived after Liegghio connected on a 38-yard field goal early in the second quarter.

The Redblacks closed out the opening half with the lead after Ward hit a 36-yard field goal to make it 12-10 Ottawa.

UP NEXT

Redblacks: Visit the Winnipeg Blue Bombers (0-4) on Friday.

Tiger-Cats: Host the B.C. Lions (3-1) on Sunday, July 7.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 30, 2024.

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