The Hamilton Tiger-Cats fumbled away their first potential win of the 2022 CFL season in a sobering 29-25 loss against the previously winless Edmonton Elks 29-25 in a Canada Day clash at Tim Hortons Field.
Ticats quarterback Dane Evans fumbled at the Hamilton 14-yard-line and Edmonton’s Jalen Collins scooped up the football and took it back for the game-winning score as the Elks picked up their first win of the season.
The Elks scored 17 points off four Hamilton turnovers, including two interceptions of Evans who finished the game with 197 passing yards on 20-of-31 throws.
Edmonton rookie QB Tre Ford made his first career start and completed 15 of his 26 passes for 159 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He also ran the ball six times for a game-high 61 yards.
Hamilton jumped out to a 2-0 lead just 2:31 into the contest when Edmonton punter Matt Mengel conceded a safety instead of kicking into the wind from the Elks end zone.
On the ensuing drive, Evans tossed a 21-yard touchdown to Steven Dunbar Jr. to increase Hamilton’s lead to 9-0 with 7:46 to play in the opening quarter.
Edmonton got on the board with 30 seconds left in the first quarter when Kai Locksley capped off a 13 play, 79-yard drive with a one yard touchdown run but kicker Sergio Castillo missed the extra point.
Hamilton’s Lawrence Woods took the ensuing kickoff 72 yards for a touchdown to put the Ticats up 16-6 at the end of the first quarter.
Michael Domagala made it 19-7 for the Ticats with 1:28 remaining in the second period when he booted a 25-yard field goal, but Hamilton conceded a safety on their next drive to make it 19-9 at halftime.
After both teams traded field goals late in the third quarter, Elks linebacker Brady Shelton intercepted Evans at the Hamilton 40-yard-line which led to a Castillo field goal that cut the deficit to seven points.
Evans was picked off again at the start of the fourth quarter and five plays later rookie QB Tre Ford threw his first career touchdown, a 10-yard toss to Kenny Lawler, to even the game 22-22.
Domagala kicked a 33-yard field goal to put the Cats up 25-22 with just over three minutes left in the game before Collins’ scoop and score that gave the Elks the victory.
Hamilton is now on its first bye week of the season and next plays July 16 at home against the Ottawa Redblacks.