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Hamilton Tiger-Cats seek bounce back in home opener game

A week after losing their first game of the CFL season, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats have another opportunity to put a checkmark in the win column Saturday night when they host the Calgary Stampeders.

The Ticats (0-1) dropped their opening game last week in Saskatchewan after the Roughriders scored two touchdowns in 20 seconds in the fourth quarter to break a tight game open and win 30-13 at Mosaic Stadium.

Calgary (1-0) opened their season with a 30-27 victory at home against the Montreal Alouettes thanks to a game-winning field goal in the last minute of the game.

The Pregame Show on 900 CHML begins at 5:30 p.m. Kickoff is at 6:30 p.m. and you can listen to the action on 900 CHML radio. A half-hour after the final whistle, catch The 5th Quarter postgame show on CHML, 900chml.com and on CHML’s Facebook page.

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Hamilton’s quarterback Dane Evans was in the headlines this week as he celebrated the birth of his first child, a daughter named Ivey, with his wife Nikki on Tuesday at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

“The whole day was amazing,” said Evans, who admits that being in the delivery room at the hospital is “way more intense” than being in the huddle on the field.

Ivey weighed in at seven pounds, nine ounces, and Evans says he is hoping she becomes a volleyball star or golf professional when she grows up so he can “be her caddie.”

Read more: Hamilton Tiger-Cats shuffle offensive line for game versus Stampeders

Bo Levi Mitchell was forced to leave last week’s game with a leg injury and was wearing a walking boot after the game, but the Stamps star QB managed to practice this week and is slated to start Saturday’s showdown with Evans and the Ticats.

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It remains to be seen how healthy Mitchell is, but the Cats also have their own injury concerns with running back Don Jackson, defensive tackle Dylan Wynn and centre Alex Fontana all landing on the 1-game injured list.

Hamilton Tiger-Cats

This game marks the 99th regular-season meeting between the Cats and Stamps dating back to 1961, with Calgary leading the series 66-32.

Hamilton has won two of the last three meetings against the Stampeders, games that were all decided by seven points or less.

Read more: Hamilton’s ‘Coach O’ among Hall of Fame inductees

Saturday’s contest is billed as the Hall of Fame Game, a day after the Canadian Football Hall of Fame held its induction ceremony at Tim Hortons Field.

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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 13 individuals comprised the class of 2020 and 2021 who were enshrined into the Hall of Fame.

3 quick stats:

  • Dane Evans has one career start against Calgary, a 19-18 loss on Sept. 14, 2019 at McMahon Stadium. Evans completed 34 passes for 360 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
  • The Tiger-Cats recorded 11 two-and-outs last week, the most in a game since 2015. Hamilton made just five of 23 second down conversions against the Roughriders. The Stampeders had just four two-and-outs last week, all in the first half.
  • Calgary QB Bo Levi Mitchell is 12-1 against the Ticats and holds an all-time record of 85-22-2. He is tied for 12th place on the career wins list with Canadian Football Hall of Famer Russ Jackson.

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