On a night that went from bad to worse, only a knee injury could stop Toronto Argonauts quarterback Ricky Ray from tearing the Bombers apart en route to a miserable 35-19 loss in front of a heckling hometown crowd.
Two of the Bombers’ points came via a late-game safety by Argos kicker Noel Prefontaine, as the clock ticked down in garbage time. Nine came off the foot of kicker Justin Palardy, who opened scoring with a 34-yard field goal less than three minutes into the night, after quarterback Buck Pierce led a 59-yard drive. He would do it again only 10 seconds into the second, a 30-yarder that time, and strike one last time in the fourth, even though the game was already far out of hand and most of the crowd of 31,257 had fled the stands.
At any rate, Palardy had a nice night. So did receiver Clarence Denmark, who had three receptions in the first, including one for 38 yards and another for 39, both of which helped put the Bombers in scoring position. Too bad most the rest of the team can’t say the same good things.
The Bombers’ attack sputtered after that nice start out of the gate: Pierce went 10 and 14 for 139 yards with one interception before Burke yanked him out of the game and replaced him with back-up Justin Goltz in the third. Pierce suffered an abdominal injury — the extent of his injury won’t be known until Monday.
Meanwhile, Ray sliced and diced the defence, completing 19 of 20 attempts for 286 yards and two touchdowns, and nearly a third major before he had to leave the game with a banged-up knee in the third quarter.
Goltz did have some luck, handing the ball off to Chad Simpson near the Argos end zone for the Bombers’ only touchdown of the game. True, there were only 29 seconds left to play, but hey, at least those fans left at Investors Group Field got something to smile over, as receiver Isaac Anderson caught the two-point convert to make the final score.
The Bombers weren't the only ones being heckled at Investors Group Field; Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was spotted along the sidelines at Friday night's game, and heard his fair share from the crowd before exiting.