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Edmonton Elks open season with 16-12 loss to Ottawa Redblacks

Ottawa Redblacks' Ryan Davis (15) is chased by Edmonton Elks' Jonathon Mincy Sr. (2) during first half CFL action in Edmonton, Alta., on Saturday August 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Abdul Kanneh had a 102-yard interception return as the Ottawa Redblacks spoiled the start of the new Elks era in Edmonton, emerging with a season-opening 16-12 road victory Saturday.

LISTEN BELOW: Head coach Jaime Elizondo

The first _ and what would turn out to be the only _ major score of the game came five minutes into the fourth quarter courtesy of the Redblacks defence, as a pass from Elks QB Trevor Harris bounced out of the hands of receiver Shai Ross and into the arms of Ottawa’s Kanneh, who blazed almost the length of the field in the other direction for the winning touchdown.

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LISTEN BELOW: Trevor Harris

The Elks (0-1) originally got on the scoreboard first, recording a 12-yard Sean Whyte field goal just over five minutes in.

Ottawa (1-0) responded with a 52-yard Lewis Ward field goal late in the opening frame.

The Redblacks looked to have surged into the lead on a trick play early in the second when punt returner DeVonte Dedmon lateralled across the field to Ryan Davis, who made a lengthy run into the end zone. But the play was deemed to have been a forward pass and called back.

The teams traded field goals before Whyte nailed a 47-yarder as time expired to make it 9-6 at the half.

The Elks will look for an improved performance next Saturday, when they host the Montreal Alouettes.

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