Adams has big night to lead BC Lions in win over Ottawa REDBLACKS

VANCOUVER — In a milestone night, quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. led the BC Lions to their 10th win of the season as they earned a 34-19 win over the Ottawa REDBLACKS to close out a Friday Night Football doubleheader.

Adams completed his first touchdown pass as a member of the Lions as he helped his team tighten their grip on second place in the West Division Standings. In what looked like a vintage performance from the BC pivot, Adams completed 77 per cent of his passes as he threw for over 300 yards and two touchdowns.

Receivers Dominique Rhymes and Lucky Whitehead helped to lead the Lions passing attack in the absence of Bryan Burnham. The pair of BC playmakers combined for 190 yards and a touchdown on eight receptions in the win over Ottawa.

» Box Score: REDBLACKS, Lions by the numbers
» Through the Lens:Ottawa at BC
» Watch: Butler scores second touchdown of the game
» BC offence finds rhythm in win over Ottawa 

The BC offence wasted no time reminding everybody why they are one of the most revered units in the league. With their opening drive of the game Adams engineered a nine-play 86-yard scoring drive, helping the Lions assume an early lead.

It was an electrifying drive from Adams as he sparked the drive with a 24-yard scramble. The BC pivot capped off the drive with a 13-yard strike to Keon Hatcher, giving Adams his first passing touchdown since taking over as the starting quarterback in Vancouver.

The REDBLACKS appeared to be constructing a response of their own. Nick Arbuckle completed four quick passes for nearly 40 yards to help push his team into scoring range.

However, a procedure penalty called against Ottawa denied them of an opportunity to find the end zone and they were forced to settle for a field goal. Ottawa kicker Lewis Ward had no issue converting the 12-yard attempt, helping his team find their first points of the game.

The Lions would manage to respond to the Ottawa score as they found the end zone on a second consecutive drive. A five-yard scoring drive would help the Lions assume a 14-3 lead as time expired in the first quarter.

Just as he did on the first drive of the game, it was Adams who ignited the scoring drive, only this time it was with his arm. The BC pivot completed a 10-yard pass to Rhymes up the left sideline, before going right back to Rhymes with a 36-yard deep shot.

The long gain from Rhymes would help set up Adams for his second passing touchdown of the game as he completed a five yard swing-pass to running back James Butler who found the end zone on a tough 15-yard run after the catch.

A defensive back and forth consumed most of the games second quarter as the team’s traded consecutive stops. BC would force a 44-yard missed field goal from Ottawa’s Ward. While REDBLACKS defensive lineman Avery Williams and Lorenzo Mauldin would stall a BC drive with back-to-back sacks.

Approaching the three-minute warning in the games first half, Adams again started a drive with a long gain as he found Whitehead for a 26-yard completion. Moving the Lions offence into Ottawa territory in just one play.

Two plays later Adams dropped back looking to make a play through the air and again completed a long pass as he connected with Rhymes for 35-yards, putting the Lions offence on the Ottawa two-yard line.

BC quarterback Antonio Pipkin was called on to convert from the goal line. The Lions pivot found a crease to the wide side of the field and worked his way into the end zone giving his team a 21-3 lead.


With just under a minute remaining in the half, Arbuckle once again had the REDBLACKS offence driving down the field. With possession of the ball on the BC 12-yard line an intentional grounding called again Arbuckle forced Ottawa to settle for a field goal.

Ward redeemed himself for the earlier miss as he split the uprights on a 22-yard attempt to help his team chip away at the BC lead.

With under 20 seconds remaining in the first half of play, the Lions stayed aggressive offensively and found an opportunity to score before the end of the quarter.

Adams found Hatcher down field for a 34-yard completion to help set up a field goal attempt from Sean Whyte. With no time left on the clock, Whyte lined up a 43-yard attempt and sent a booming kick through the uprights. Giving the Lions a 24-6 lead to close out the first half.

To open the second half of action the Lions continued to exploit the REDBLACKS secondary for long gains through the air. With his first pass of the new half Adams launched a 54-yard pass that found it’s way into the hands of Whitehead. Setting up the BC offence on the Ottawa 10-yard line.

Facing a second and goal, Adams settled into the pocket looking towards the end zone, but Ottawa’s Mauldin got a hand in the way of the passing lane to break up the attempt and force a BC field goal. With an effortless 11-yard make from Whyte, the Lions took a 27-6 lead over the REDBLACKS to open the third quarter of action.

With their first possession of the new half Ottawa would manage a response to the BC score. Arbuckle led a six-play scoring drive, which saw him complete two passes to Justin Hardy for 45 yards. However, the Lions defence would hold the REDBLACKS out of the end zone as Ward converted a 19-yard field goal for his third make of the game.

Nearing the end of the third quarter BC defensive lineman David Menard burst through the Ottawa offensive line to bring down Arbuckle for his sixth sack of the season, forcing the REDBLACKS to call upon Ward for the fifth time in the game. The Ottawa kicker converted from long-range as the 47-yard attempt sailed through the uprights.

BC opened the final quarter of action with good field position after a 29-yard punt return from Terry Williams set his team up on the Ottawa 35-yard line.

On a second down and 10 the REDBLACKS appeared to have earned the stop they needed as Kene Onyeka brought down Adams for a sack. However, the tackle was a bit too high and Onyeke was assessed a horse-collar penalty, giving BC a new set of downs.

Two plays later, Pipkin seemingly iced the game as he surged forward on the goal line for his second short yardage score of the game, giving the Lions a 34-12 lead in the fourth quarter.

Looking ahead to Week 18, the Lions will travel to BMO Field to take on the East Division leading Toronto Argonauts. The REDBLACKS will travel to La Belle Province as they prepare to faceoff with the Montreal Alouettes.

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