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CFL Week 13 Recap: Two More Playoff Spots Clinched

by Clyde E. Dawkins 7 months ago in football
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The push for the Grey Cup Playoffs continued on, with two more teams joining the party in Week 13

Toronto Argonauts quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson

12 weeks of the CFL season have come and gone, and the push for the playoffs marched on. Entering the final four weeks of the season, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers were the first and only team officially in the playoffs. The defending Grey Cup Champions clinched a spot in Week 11, and Week 12 saw them lock up first place in the West Division, giving them the right to host the West Final on December 5. Regarding Week 13, three teams had a chance to clinch playoff spots and join the Bombers in a quest for the Grey Cup.

The scenarios were as follows. The Saskatchewan Roughriders could clinch a playoff spot with a win, a loss from the Edmonton Elks, and a loss from either the BC Lions or the Calgary Stampeders. The Toronto Argonauts and the Montréal Alouettes could each get into the playoffs with a win. It was the Stamps who kicked off Week 13, doing so in the Canadian Capital against the Ottawa Redblacks. No surprise, the Stamps took care of business against the Redblacks; originally trailing 10-3 after one, but going on to outscore Ottawa 23-3. The Stampeders won 26-13, meaning that the Roughriders would need help elsewhere in their playoff quest.

Later that Friday evening, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats faced off against the lowly Edmonton Elks, and it wasn't even close. Hamilton outscored Edmonton 14-1 in the first quarter, and 13-3 in the second quarter. The Elks didn't come to life until the fourth, but by then, the damage was done, and the Tiger-Cats coasted to a 39-23 victory to keep in pace in the East Division. The Elks' latest loss meant that the Roughriders would enter the following day needing a win and a BC Lions loss to get into the playoffs.

The BC Lions played first, and they were in Toronto facing the Argonauts, with the Boatmen coming off a devastating loss to the Alouettes. The Argos started well, going up 10-0 after an interception resulted in a field goal, with a touchdown following that. BC took the lead before halftime, but the first half ended with the Argos up 16-14. The Argos ended up with a late 23-22 lead, but BC had a chance to take the lead with a FG by Jimmy Camacho, only for the kick to be blocked. Even so, the Argos strangely opted to run down the clock and take knees, and it resulted in the team punting from their own end zone. This resulted in BC in FG range again, but Camacho's game-winning attempt went wide.

So instead of a Lions regulation win, it's a single that ties it, and the game goes to overtime. BC won the toss but deferred, and Toronto's drive ended with with a QB sneak TD by Antonio Pipkin, followed by a two point conversion. The Lions needed to get an eight-point TD to match it, and while they got the first six, they could not get the two pointer, and as a result, the Toronto Argonauts won 31-29, in overtime, and locked in a playoff spot in the process. With the Lions loss, the Saskatchewan Roughriders could get in with a win, but so could their opponents, the Montréal Alouettes. A low-scoring affair between the two clubs, but in the end, the Riders took care of business and edged the Als by a score of 19-14, clinching a playoff spot. As for the Alouettes, they will have to wait at least another week to join the playoff party.

So with Week 13 in the books, here's how things stand. In the West Division, the idle Winnipeg Blue Bombers remain at 10-1 and will host the West Final on December 5. The Saskatchewan Roughriders improve to 7-4 and are headed to the playoffs, while the Calgary Stampeders are now at .500 (6-6). The BC Lions drop to 4-7 and the Edmonton Elks are 2-8, but I want to talk about the Lions. The Lions have now lost five straight games! This team was once in a good position, with playoffs being a near inevitability for BC. They are in a terrible decline, and it is coming at the absolute wrong time. Forget about second place and home field in the West Semifinal. This team may be done. They are a game and a half behind the third-place Stampeders, and regarding the crossover, they are a full two games out.

In the East Division, the Toronto Argonauts are not only playoff bound, but they are back in first place at 7-4. The Hamilton Tiger-Cats and the Montréal Canadiens are tied at 6-5, but the TiCats have a tiebreaker edge, which knocks the Als down to third. The Ottawa Redblacks are holding them all up at 2-10. The East Division race continues to heat up; the Argos are back in the lead, but they need to end their division play on the winning end, as that record could knock them down a bit. Two of Toronto's final three games are division games--a perfect chance to increase their hold in the East Division, and get first place.

Three weeks remain, and three playoff spots remain, as the season will enter the month of November. Week 14 will kick off in Hamilton on Friday, November 5, as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats will host the slumping BC Lions. Later that same evening, the Saskatchewan Roughriders will look to increase their hold on 2nd place in the West Division, as they will face the lowly Edmonton Elks. On Saturday, November 6, the Ottawa Redblacks will host the Toronto Argonauts, and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers will return to action against the Montréal Alouettes.

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About the author

Clyde E. Dawkins

Born on March 18, 1985. I am an avid fan of sports and wrestling, and I've been a fan of female villains since the age of eight. Also love movies--especially comedy and horror--and among my favorite TV shows are The Simpsons and Family Guy

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