Defensive duel: Calgary Stampeders top Montreal Alouettes 12-6 in Montreal

MONTREAL — Defence was the name of the game in Montreal on Monday afternoon.

The Calgary Stampeders walked away with a narrow 12-6 victory over the Montreal Alouettes in the first match of a Thanksgiving Day doubleheader.

Bo Levi Mitchell has struggled at Percival Molson Stadium throughout his career, entering the game with a 0-2 record at the field. However, the 28-year-old overcame his demons to help the Stamps capture their first win in Montreal since 2013.

Johnny Manziel’s first CFL victory will have to wait at least another week. The former Heisman Trophy winner threw for 250 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.

Stamps defensive lineman Micah Johnson recorded five tackles with two quarterback sacks.

The Stamps managed to pick up the ‘W’ despite not registering a point until early in the fourth quarter.

The win secured a home playoff game for Calgary and officially eliminated the Montreal Alouettes from postseason contention.

Both defences held strong in the opening quarter as both teams played to a scoreless stalemate in the first 15 minutes.

The Stamps appeared to making progress on a drive that carried into the second quarter. However, Mitchell’s pass was intercepted by Chris Ackie at Montreal’s own 20-yard line to end the promising push.

The game was still tied 0-0 at the three minute warning.

It was Montreal that would get on the board first with a 44-yard field goal late in the second quarter to lead 3-0.

The Als got the ball back again before the end of the half and made the most of their limited time on the clock. Receiver Ernest Jackson tipped a high pass back into his own hands for an 16-yard gain. That play was followed by another impressive catch, this time by T.J. Graham, who managed to stay in bounds for a 25-yard catch.

Despite having momentum on the drive, Montreal ran out of time and had to settle for a 41-yard field goal by Boris Bede on the last play of the half.

Terry Williams appeared to provide a spark for the Stamps midway through the third quarter with a 81-yard punt return touchdown. However, the major was called back due an illegal block to keep the Stamps scoreless.

After struggling through 45 minutes of play, the Stamps finally managed to get on the board early in the fourth quarter.

Mitchell moved the sticks by finding Juwan Brescacin on back-to-back completions, and then running the ball himself to put Calgary in the red zone.

Terry Williams capped off the drive by rushing into the end zone for a six-yard touchdown. The successful extra point gave Calgary their first lead of the afternoon.

The Stamps added to the lead with a long 49-yard field goal by Rene Paredes.

Calgary missed a field goal with 25 second left on the clock to put the game away, giving the Als one last chance to pull off a comeback victory.

Calgary is back at home on Saturday to face the BC Lions. Montreal is on a bye week, and will return to action Oct. 20 against the Toronto Argonauts at BMO Field.

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