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Zach Collaros solid as Tiger-Cats top Blue Bombers in CFL pre-season play

06/20/2015 12:58 EDT | Updated 06/19/2016 05:59 EDT
WINNIPEG - Zach Collaros didn't even play a full half. He didn't need to.

The Hamilton Tiger-Cats starting quarterback helped mount a 20-7 lead before his coach pulled him in what turned out to be a 26-15 pre-season victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Friday.

"Saw plenty. He's ready to play," Ticats head coach Kent Austin said.

Collaros threw a 15-yard touchdown to Bakari Grant 1:24 into the game and completed 14-of-17 pass attempts for 183 yards before making way for Jeremiah Masoli with about six minutes left in the second quarter.

"I thought our execution in the first half was pretty good, for the most part," Austin said.

"We had a couple miscues, but I thought Zach (Collaros) played really well. He handled pressure very well. He knew when he was hot. He delivered the ball accurately. We blocked pretty well up front. We protected him and we were able to run the ball effectively."

Justin Medlock booted four field goals, two before Collaros exited the game. Ray Holley ran eight yards for a touchdown while Collaros was behind centre.

"I thought we were pretty efficient," Collaros said. "We executed well. Obviously, we have to see the film. It's never as good as it seems or never as bad as it seems."

Masoli went 8-of-17 for 106 yards.

Winnipeg running back Cameron Marshall scored on a one-yard run in the opening half in front of 24,344 fans at Investors Group Field.

Bombers starting quarterback Drew Willy played the first half and the first series in the third quarter. He was 11 of 17 for 142 yards and ran twice for 12 yards.

"They're a good football team, give them credit, but at the same we did some things on offence and defence and special teams that isn't winning football," Willy said.

Paris Cotton ran two yards for Winnipeg's other touchdown at 1:04 of the fourth, while the Tiger-Cats conceded a late safety.

Lirim Hajrullahu was wide on a 36-yard field-goal attempt for Winnipeg in the second quarter and missed a new 32-yard convert following Cotton's touchdown.

Brian Brohm, Josh Portis and Marve relieved Willy in the second half.

"I don't think it was good enough, but we lost, and that's why I don't think it's good enough, right?" Bomber head coach Mike O'Shea said.

"The good thing is, we've got a lot of tape to look at and evaluate these guys."

CFL teams must set a 46-man roster by Saturday night.

The Ticats, who left a number of starters at home, also beat Ottawa in the pre-season. Winnipeg had a victory over Toronto.

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