Brandon Sun (Newspaper) - July 5, 2002, Brandon, Manitoba
Eskimos rally past Renegades
EDMONTON — The Edmonton Eskimos overcame an 18-point deficit to defeat the Ottawa Renegades 40-24 last night, denying the new Canadian Football League franchise their first victory ever.
Edmonton (2-0-0) were shocked early by the Renegades, who used a swarming defence and an explosive offence to jump out to a 24-6 lead.
But after listening to the Commonwealth Stadium crowd of 30,152 boo the poor effort, the Eskimos scored 24 unanswered points on five consecutive possessions.
Quarterback Jason Maas found receiver Scott Robinson from eight yards out in the final minute of the first half and running back Ronald Williams ran in another touchdown just 1:28 into the second half.
Import tailback John Avery also scored on an 11-yard rushing play, while kicker Sean Fleming added field goals of 17, 28,49 and 38 yards, along with a 57-yard single.
Terry Vaughn stretched the Eskimo lead to 13 when he took a Maas pass and ran the ball in from 19 yards out late in the game.
Edmonton’s defence held the visitors scoreless in the second half.
The Eskimos were fortunate to come out with a victory after Ottawa dominated play early. The Renegades’ defensive line terrorized Maas, sacking the Edmonton quarterback five times in the opening 30 minutes, and seven times overall.
The Renegades (0-1-0-1) used a combination of defensive intensity and explosive offence to initially frustrate the home team. Former Edmonton backup quarterback Dan Crowley, one of ll Renegades who have played for the
Eskimos, picked his old team apart, throwing for two long touchdowns.
Crowley hit Denis Montana on a pretty 91-yard pass-and-run play for a touchdown at 11:13 of the second quarter. Two and a half minutes later, Crowley again went deep, this time to slotback Eddie Brown on a scoring play that covered 78 yards.
Shawn Gallant scored Ottawa’s first touchdown of the night when he recovered a blocked punt in the end zone at 8:27 of the opening quarter. Gallant fell on top of the football after Gerald Vaughn blocked Fleming’s punt.
Edmonton received some bad news in the third quarter when veteran special teams player Jed Roberts was forced out of the game with a broken right ankle. The Eskimos were attempting a convert on Williams’ touchdown when Roberts was injured.
The 34-year-old Ottawa native was immediately put in an ambulance and taken to hospital.
The last win by an Ottawa team at Commonwealth Stadium came on Aug. 26, 1983, when the defunct Rough Riders defeated Edmonton 17-14.
— Canadian Press
Roberts has attention of teammates
Boston second baseman Lou Merloni and Ken Huckaby watch the relay throw to first base after the Toronto baserunner tries to break up a potential double play with a hard slide. Merloni’s throw was late to first base.
Boston’s Lowe on real high
WINNIPEG — Few players in the Canadian Football League have the ability to draw fans to their edge of their seats the way Winnipeg Blue Bomber tailback Charles Roberts can.
Nobody, frankly, can do this: It’s sweltering hot last Friday night and Bomber linebacker Ryland Wickman desperately needs a swig of Gatorade and spot to sit after another dominating defensive series against the Toronto Argonauts.
Instead, his chest heaving and the sweat cascading down his face, he’s standing on the sidelines jockeying for a good spot to see No. I do his magical thing.
“He’s just so fun to watch,” said Wickman, as the Bombers completed final preparations for tonight’s matchup with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, 1-0, at Canad Inns Stadium (TSN, 8:30 p.m.). “When I come off the field usually I go sit down on the bench somewhere to catch my breath, but when he’s out there I’ll stand on the sideline to watch just to see what kind of stuff he’s doing.
“I’m glad I don’t have to go out there and tackle him. He has a way of making people look silly out there.”
Wickman has seen more of Roberts than just about anybody, and he still doesn’t get tired of his act. The two were teammates at Sacramento State and it was Wickman who convinced Bomber personnel man Brendan Taman to take a closer look at the five-foot-six, 170-pound tailback who didn’t come sporting just one highlight tape, but a highlight library.
“I remember his first year in college, he was on the scout team and I had to play against him every day,” Wickman recalled. “What a pain in the ass ... you think you’ve got a good hit on the guy and all of a sudden you’re reaching for his belt. I’m just grateful I don’t have to be out there against him. I sure don’t need to be running around looking funny.”
Roberts has already made it a habit of making defenders look funny with a repertoire of moves — particularly his spin — that often leaves them untangling their feet as the little back zooms away.
“You don’t even feel him going by you,” said Bomber guard Mike Sutherland. “Charlie’s so elusive, when can have a hole created then have it close down and he’ll still manage to get through there. He can make his way through a lot of traffic without even getting touched.
“We’ve got a great combination of backs here with different styles: Mike Sellers, Troy Mills, Wade Miller ... but Charlie’s the most elusive, the most explosive the most spectacular guy of the bunch."
And according to Roberts fans can only expect more of the same against Hamilton, plus next week and beyond.
“I like it that people respect the fact that if I’m on the field and I get the ball in my hands it could be like the greatest show on earth, that I could take it 70 yards,” said Roberts. “That’s how I feel: if I touch the ball, no matter what defence they’re in or what happened the play before, I could go.”
Doug Flutie had it when he played up here. So did Pinball Clemons. Ditto Gretzky, Jordan, Barry Sanders. They all had that unique ability to make everybody in the building focus squarely on them because you didn’t dare want to miss a moment of their brilliance.
BOSTON — Derek Lowe had a great first half, and is excited heading into baseball’s all-star break.
A candidate to start on the mound for the American League next week, Lowe got his 12th victory as the Boston Red Sox defeated Toronto Blue Jays 9-5 yesterday and a five-game series sweep.
Lowe (12-4) allowed five runs — four earned — and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings. His ERA rose from 2.18 to 2.36.
“If it happens, it happens,” Lowe said. “You know you’re going to the game. You’ll find out in the next two days, I would think. I’ve done all I can do. I can’t pitch anymore.”
Lowe failed as a closer last April and lost his job to Ugueth Urbina — a fellow all-star. He pitched a no-hitter in just his fifth start, beating Tampa Bay 10-0 on Apnl 27 for the first no-hitter in Fenway Park in 37 years. That came just three weeks after he nearly no-hit Baltimore on April 6 in his first start of the season.
“It’s been enjoyable,” said Lowe,
who had lost his previous two starts. “The last three starts haven’t been exactly what you want going into the all-star break. I’m really going to enjoy the next six days.”
Nomar Garciaparra homered and drove in four runs, and Trot Nixon hit a solo homer and drove in three runs. The Red Sox have won IO straight against the Blue Jays since losing on opening day and have won 22 of their last 30 games against Toronto.
Boston had not swept a five-game series since Aug. 25-28, 1989, against Detroit.
“It’s hard to sweep no matter who you’re playing,” Red Sox manager Grady Little said. “We had some balls fall in our direction the last four days.” The Blue Jays have been swept seven times this season.
Boston wasted a 4-0 lead, then went ahead 6-4 in the sixth on Jose Off'erman’s RBI single off Felix Heredia (0-2) and Garciaparra’s sacrifice fly. Lowe threw a run-scoring wild pitch
in the seventh on what would have been an inning-ending strikeout by Shannon Stewart.
“I’ve seen Lowe with better stuff’, but he battled out there today,” Blue Jays manager Carlos Tosca said.
Nixon homered in the bottom half, and Garciaparra homered in the eighth off Kelvim Escobar, a drive that hooked around the right-field foul pole.
Nixon had a two-run single in the second inning, just his seventh and eighth RBIs in his last 56 at-bats.
Shortstop Dave Berg’s error in the third led to a pair of unearned runs by the Red Sox. Garciaparra’s team-high 28th double drove in Johnny Damon to make it 3-0, and Pete Walker walked Jason Vantek with the bases loaded.
Toronto tied it in the fourth on Vernon Wells’ RBI single, Josh Phelps’ two-run double off the Green Monster and Joe Lawrence’s RBI grounder. They were the first major league RBIs for Phelps.
Baldur star bails out short-staffed Goldeyes
CONTINUED FROM Bl
• • • O •
Darrick Jones of the Baldur Regals became the second MSBL regular to suit up with the Winnipeg Goldeyes of the Northern League this season when he caught a couple of innings last weekend.
Jones was signed as an emergency replacement when Winnipeg’s regular catcher was signed by the Detroit Tigers. Jones never got a chance to bat, but did catch the final two innings of the Goldeyes 11-4 win over the Gary RailCats on Saturday.
He was signed on Friday and released on Monday. Matt Mutcheson of the Birtle Blue Jays served a similar stint with the Goldeyes earlier in the month.
It may not be long before a professional team does come calling on Jones. The Baldur resident is coming off a spectacular final season at Graceland University in Iowa and has been one of the best players in the MSBL this year.
Jones was a second-team NAJA All-American with the Yellow Jackets, batting .439 with a team-high six home runs, 30 runs scored and 45 RBIs is 148 at-bats. He also had 15 doubles and three tnples, and led the team in slugging percentage (.703) and on-base percentage (.494).
Since returning to Baldur, Jones has put up similar numbers. He has a .416 batting average (second in the league), one homer, 18 runs, 15 RBIs, five doubles and two triples.
Jones has even brought some more Graceland flavour to Baldur in the form of import pitcher Jay Steffen, who led the college team’s staff with six wins and 47 strikeouts this season. He has pitched very well so far in two games with the Regals.
AROUND THE HORN — Brandon and Pierson will square off in a mosquito AA regional playoff series this weekend at the Kinsmen Diamond on Brandon Avenue. Games I and 2 are Saturday at ll a.m. and 5 p.m., with Game 3, if needed, at ll a.m. Sunday ... Lane Curry of Altona, a long time senior player in the Pembina Valley region, will host an all-ages baseball school July 8-12 rn Altona at the West Park School. Anyone interested in participating can call Curry at 324-9732, e-mail him at [email protected]
or get further info online at www.pembi-navalleyonline. com.
Ted Wyman is a Sun sports writer. He can be reached by phone at 571-7435 or by e-mail at twymantobrandonsun.com
incKery no neip lur rmines
PHILADELPHIA — After Philadelphia’s attempt at a hidden-ball trick didn’t pan out, Montreal’s Brad Wilkerson made the ball disappear - into the seats for a go-ahead home run.
Wilkerson hit a two-out, two-run homer off Jose Mesa in the ninth inning — Montreal’s first hit since the fourth — and the Expos beat the Phillies 2-1 in National League baseball action.
Mesa (2-5) relieved to start the ninth with a 1-0 lead and walked Brian Schneider leading off. After Mike Mordecai sacrificed and with Jose Macias at the plate, Philadelphia tried a hidden-ball trick, with second baseman Tomas Perez tagging Schneider.
Second-base umpire Brian Runge called Schneider out, but after Montreal manager Frank Robinson talked to crew chief Tim McClelland,
who was behind the plate, the call was reversed, with McClelland ruling time had been called at the time of the play.
Many of the Phillies were caught off guard by the trickery, including catcher Mike Lieberthal, who was the player that requested time and began to walk toward the mound to talk to Mesa.
“Tomas and Mesa did it on their own and it was Tomas’ idea,” Phillies manager Larry Bowa said. “Lieby had called time and gone out to talk about the hitter. We’ve never done it before. I thought Mesa had the ball.”
Macias struck out, and Wilkerson turned on a 1-2 inside fastball and tucked his seventh home run of the season just inside the right-field foul pole.
— Associated Press
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Colisimo nets four
Rim Colisimo scored four goals to lead the Brandon Kickers past J&M Fury 7-2 in one of three Brandon Senior Soccer League games last night.
Ryan Nickle, Brendan Volkmar and Jonathon Volkmar also scored for the Kickers at Optimist Park, while Jon Nairn and Jack Kelleher replied for the Fury.
At Canada Games Park, Max Bratzke scored three times to pace the Huggy’s Royals to a 4-2 triumph over Arsenal.
Heiko Zinn had the other Huggy’s goal, while Jason Rowley scored both Arsenal goals.
And at Neepawa, the host Sound Advice Rangers tied the Barnacles Hotspur 2-2.
Jody Plett had both Neepawa goals, while Darrold Innis and Allan Bitterman tallied for the Hotspur.