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Elks kick-off three-game road trip against Riders in Regina

Saskatchewan Roughriders Deon Lacey (45) chases Edmonton Elks Walter Fletcher (25) during first half CFL action in Edmonton, Alta., on Friday November 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Amber Bracken

The Edmonton Elks have three games remaining on their schedule, all of which will be played on the road, in the span of seven grueling days. The Elks road trip begins Saturday afternoon with a clash against the Saskatchewan Roughriders at Mosaic Stadium in Regina.

Read more: Edmonton Elks prepare for an unprecedented road trip of 3 games in 7 days

When the team arrived in Regina on Friday afternoon, there was snow on the ground. Head coach Jamie Elizondo says some players were a little shocked but feels the team as a whole will be ready to perform on this history-making road trip.

“They arrived here (in Regina) excited and they’re looking forward to this journey that we’re on,” Elizondo said.

“We’re about to do something that has never been done in football playing three games in one week.”

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“I shared with them all week, ‘this is something you can tell your kids about and it’s even a better story if we can go out and win all three games.'”

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Edmonton Elks head coach Jamie Elizondo on the keys to facing the Riders in the second game of a back-to-back, this time in Regina

Read more: Morley Scott’s ‘Postcards from the Road’ with the Edmonton Elks

Saturday’s game between the Elks and Riders is the second game of a home-and-home series.

Last week the Elks lost 19-17 on The Brick Field at Commonwealth Stadium. After trailing 19-3 after the third quarter, the Elks came alive in the fourth. Quarterback Taylor Cornelius who didn’t register a completion in the third quarter completed 11 of 14 passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns in a losing cause. Cornelius hasn’t thrown an interception in his last three games and has tossed three touchdown passes in those games. Receiver Danny Vandervoort caught both touchdown passes from Cornelius, the first two CFL touchdowns of his career for the second overall pick in the 2017 CFL Draft.

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Edmonton Elks quarterback Taylor Cornelius on lack of prep between games on the road trip and the Riders defence

Running back Walter Fletcher recorded 140 yards from scrimmage in his debut – they accounted for 35 per cent of the Elks’s total net yardage.

On defence, veteran linebacker Derrick Moncrief recorded three quarterback sacks giving him four sacks in his last three games. He is now tied for the team-lead in sacks with Thomas Costigan.

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The Elks have placed receiver Mike Jones (knee), running back/kick-returner Terry Williams (ankle), and linebacker Shaydon Phillip (elbow) on the team’s six-game injured list. Defensive lineman Mike Moore (foot) is on the one-game injured list.

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Linebacker Nyles Morgan will return to the starting lineup after missing last week’s game for personal reasons. Defensive end Chris Casher will make his Elks debut after signing with the team in late September. Defensive back Josh Woodman has been activated off the one-game injured list while running back Bruce Anderson will provide some depth at the position behind starter Walter Fletcher.

The following are the projected offensive and defensive starters for the Elks:

Offence

Quarterback: Taylor Cornelius

Running back: Walter Fletcher (fullback: James Tuck)

Offensive line: Kyle Saxelid, Tomas Jack-Kurdyla, David Beard, Matt O’Donnell, Steven Nielsen

Receivers: Armanti Edwards, Earnest Edwards, Jalen Tolliver, Shai Ross, Tevaun Smith

Defence

Defensive line: Antonio Simmons, Jake Ceresna, Chris Nelson, Kwaku Boateng

Linebackers: Nyles Morgan, Kieshawn Bierria, Derrick Moncrief

Defensive backs: Nafees Lyon, Trumaine Washington, Jordan Hoover, Aaron Grymes, Jonathon Rose

You can hear live coverage of Saturday’s game between the Elks and the Riders on 630 CHED starting with Countdown to Kickoff at 12:30 p.m.

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The opening kickoff from Mosaic Stadium in Regina will be at 2 p.m. with Morley Scott and Dave Campbell calling all of the live action. Plus, hear analysis from two-time Grey Cup Champion and former Edmonton offensive lineman Blake Dermott.

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