SPORTS

Eskimos pound Lions 37-3 to secure second place in the West

11/01/2014 09:59 EDT | Updated 01/01/2015 05:59 EST
EDMONTON - It took 17 attempts but head coach Chris Jones finally got the complete game out of his Edmonton Eskimos that he's been waiting for all season.

The Eskimos scored an impressive 37-3 win over the B.C. Lions Saturday, their third straight victory that wrapped up second place in the CFL West Division.

"It's been a long time coming. We've been trying to put four quarters together and it was good to be able to go in (the locker room) tonight and brag on them a little bit," Jones said after the one-sided win before 26,388 fans. "Minus a few missed assignments here and there we played an extremely solid football game."

The Eskimos scored on their first two possessions for a 10-0 lead that they extended to 20-3 by the half. They scored on their second possession of the third quarter and were up 30-3 going into the final 15 minutes. It was only the second time this season the Lions defence had given up more than 29 points.

"It wasn't perfect football, but if I remember right we got a field goal our first drive, a touchdown our second drive," said quarterback Mike Reilly who completed 14 of 24 passes for 289 yards while running for two touchdowns. "We played real good right from the start.

"Our defence is playing real good football, gave us the ball in good position and we were converting it into points. Our offensive line did a phenomenal job … gave me plenty of time to throw and opened up some lanes for myself and John (White)."

Reilly, White and linebacker J.C. Sherritt were outstanding.

White ran 17 times for 122 yards and caught four passes for 80 yards, his second 200-yard game of the year.

"He's just a real fireball, he runs real hard, he's never going to go out of bounds and if you're in a position to tackle him he's going to pop you and make you pay for it," Reilly said of White.

"It seemed like every time he touched (the ball) he was getting 10 plus yards. He's a nice luxury to have."

Reluctant to talk about himself, White did admit it was a "pretty awesome" performance and "a pretty awesome win."

"Everyone wants to talk about my skip," he said of a little stutter-step hop he took in the middle of a 30-yard run that set up Edmonton's first touchdown in the ninth minute. "I don't know man, it just comes out. Any move it just comes out."

On the defensive side Sherritt had eight tackles, three quarterback sacks and forced a third-quarter fumble the Eskimos recovered and turned into a scoring drive. He admitted it may have been his best game of the season for himself and the defence.

"We're getting down to it and the team that can get the momentum and start shining late is going to have a good shot (in the playoffs). That's what we were focusing on, playing a complete game. We wanted to make sure we started fast and ended fast."

Sherritt saw his CFL single-season tackle record of 130 broken by Lions linebacker Solomon Elimimian, who had 12 tackles for a total of 136 on the year.

"He's a player I really respect in this league," Sherritt said. "If your record is going to fall you want it to fall to a guy who deserves it and he deserves everything he got."

The Lions dropped to 9-8 and into a tie with Saskatchewan for third place going into the final week of the regular season. Their offence, under the direction of Kevin Glenn most of the day, finished with just seven first downs and 161 total yards. Edmonton had 30 first downs and 559 yards total offence.

B.C's only points came on Paul McCallum's first-quarter 21-yard field goal. Edmonton's other touchdowns were scored by backup quarterback Pat White on a 10-yard run and a five-yard White to Calvin McCarty pass. Hugh O'Neill kicked three field goals and four converts.

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