Hamilton’s modest two game winning streak evaporated Friday night after the Tiger-Cats lost 27-19 against the visiting Saskatchewan Roughriders.
Down by eight points with five seconds to play and on the Riders’ one yard line, the Ticats had a chance to send the game to overtime with a touchdown and two point convert. But Jeremiah Masoli’s pass to Jalen Saunders was incomplete and time ran out.
Brandon Bridge threw three touchdowns in just his second career start to lead the 6-5 Riders into a fourth place tie in the West Division with the B.C. Lions.
The Mississauga, Ont. native tossed an eight yard TD to Devon Bailey early in the second quarter to extend the Riders’ lead to 10-0 over Hamilton.
Following a fumble by Saunders, Bridge connected with former Hamilton receiver Bakari Grant on a nine yard mayor to stretch their lead to 17-0.
It wasn’t until midway through the second quarter that the 2-9 Cats recorded their first 1st down of the game, and minutes later followed up with their first points when Masoli zipped a 36 yard touchdown pass into the hands of Saunders.
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Saskatchewan carried a 20-10 lead into the third quarter when another former Ticats player, defensive back Ed Gainey, registered his first of two interceptions on the night.
The Cats were penalized 25 yards when DB Demond Washington got ejected for spitting at an opponent. Moments later, Bridge heaved his third major of the game to Naaman Roosevelt from 23 yards out. Bridge, who went 21-of-31 for 231 yards, became the first Canadian to pass for three TD’s in a game since Greg Vavra in 1984.
Hamilton’s Sergio Castillo connected on all four of his field goal attempts from 19, 22, 37 and 51 yards.
Masoli completed 29-of-49 passes for 328 yards, one touchdown and two picks.
The Ticats next play on September 22 when they travel to B.C.
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