Ottawa REDBLACKS get first win of 2023 after beating Elks at home

OTTAWA – The Ottawa REDBLACKS compiled a full team effort as they found their first win of the season in front of their home crowd.

Ottawa’s defense led the charge with two interceptions and consistent pressure in the REDBLACKS’ 26-7 win over the Edmonton Elks on Friday.

Quarterback Tyrie Adams – in his first career CFL start – connected with receiver Marco Dubois for a 54-yard score in the first quarter and kicker Lewis Ward was a perfect 4-of-4 including a 50-yard kick as the REDBLACKS moved to 1-2.

Adams completed 14 of 20 passes for 185 yards and one touchdown in the win, and on the ground De’Montre Tuggle rushed for 126 yards and a touchdown.

Three different players intercepted Jarret Doege – also making his first CFL start – to help seal the first REDBLACKS win of 2023 in front of the TD Place Stadium crowd.

Receiver Maurice Ffrench had 65 yards on six receptions for a touchdown while Doege threw for 214 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions in the losing effort for a now 0-4 Elks team.

The Elks defence made a statement early as as Kony Ealy had an early sack on Adams, but it was Ottawa’s defense that came out stronger as Damon Webb’s interception in the first half set the tone for how the REDBLACKS defense would press the Elks offensive line all night.

For the REDBLACKS offence, a 34-yard kick from Ward got them on the board to start the first quarter, but they continued to move the chains and create chances to find the end zone.

A connection from Adams to Dubois on the sideline was run on a tightrope for 54 yards to give the REDBLACKS their first touchdown of the game.

Ward would continue to be automatic in the second quarter, adding six points himself including a 51-yard field goal, while the REDBLACKS defense continued to stifle any offensive attempts compiling the sacks on Doege and holding the Elks scoreless at the half.

In the second half the Elks offence could not generate a score as Doege threw another interception, this time picked off by Brandin Dandridge, but showed improvement on their next offensive drive.

Doege connected with Ffrench for a 25-yard first down that resulted in getting to the red zone and the Elks scoring their first touchdown of the game.

A fourth quarter cut back from De’Montre Tuggle as he followed Adams into the end zone resulted in another REDBLACKS touchdown to extend the lead and get their first score of the second half.

An interception grabbed by Douglas Coleman II from Doege with just under four minutes to play all but sealed the win for Ottawa, giving them their first home win since September 2021.

The Elks will travel to Saskatchewan in Week 5 to face the Roughriders at Mosaic Stadium on July 6, while the REDBLACKS will travel to Hamilton to take on the Tiger-Cats on July 8 at Tim Hortons Field.

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