CFL Week 15 Recap: Upset Specials
An abbreviated Week 15 features two shocking upsets and a pivotal West Division battle
The 2022 CFL season now enters the final one-third--the final seven weeks. Week 15 was an abbreviated week; only three games took place, with nearly the entire East Division being idle. Even so, the final one-third of the season is very important, as the remaining five spots in the 109th Grey Cup Playoffs will be filled, with the last seven weeks seeing teams jockey for position in both divisions. Week 15 began at the site of the upcoming 109th Grey Cup: Regina, Saskatchewan. The Saskatchewan Roughriders hosted the Edmonton Elks, and the Riders were looking to increase their stranglehold on the crossover position.
The Edmonton Elks, however, had different plans. They were looking to play spoiler. Yes, they were described as having "faint playoff hopes," but let's face facts: the Elks are done. While it did look like the Riders were going to take this game after leading 10-3 after 15 minutes, the Elks surprisingly took over--mainly with their defense. Eight sacks. Cody Fajardo was sacked eight times by the Elks defense. That's way too many. Even so, the game was close, but a late field goal by Sergio Castillo, and a defensive stand ended up sealing it for Edmonton. A 26-24 win over the Riders; the Elks' first win in Regina in seven years!
Just when you think the Elks had taken full control of the title of "Upset of the Year," the Hamilton Tiger-Cats happened. The TiCats played host against the team who defeated them in the last two Grey Cups, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. The Bombers were already playoff bound, and they were looking to clinch a home playoff game--needing a win and a Calgary loss. Much like Edmonton, Hamilton was looking to play spoiler. Actually, Hamilton was looking to unleash three years of frustration on the Bombers, and boy, did they! A 10-10 first quarter was followed by the TiCats outscoring the Bombers 24-4 in the second quarter, and they would never, ever look back. 48-31 was the final score, with Hamilton handing Winnipeg their second loss of the season. Both of Winnipeg's losses this season came against the East Division; remember: the East is supposed to be awful this season.
Week 15 concluded with a pivotal matchup between the BC Lions and the Calgary Stampeders, with both teams basically competing for second place in the West Division. This was a close one throughout; Calgary led by three at the half, but BC started to take over the second half and lead throughout until the Stamps tied the game with two minutes left. With the game knotted at 23, Rene Paredes' attempt at a potential game winning field goal went wide, and the game ended up going to overtime, with Calgary winning the toss, but deferring. BC's first possession ended with a touchdown and a two-point conversion, forcing Calgary to need the exact outcome to stay alive. The Stamps did find the endzone, but the two-pointer fell short, and an attempt to challenge a non-call for defensive pass interference failed. The Lions left Calgary victorious, winning 31-29 in overtime.
Here's how things stand after Week 15. In the West Division, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers actually drop to 12-2, while the BC Lions pick up a game with their OT win and improve to 9-3. The Calgary Stampeders drop to 8-5, the Saskatchewan Roughriders drop to 6-8, and the Edmonton Elks improve to 4-10 on the season. Winnipeg failed to clinch a home playoff game, but they can get it if BC defeats Calgary again in the following week. Speaking of BC, their OT win clinches the season series against Calgary, which is very important in the race for second place. The Lions also won the season series over the fourth place Riders, which means that a win next week would put them in the playoffs.
The only change in the East Division is the Hamilton Tiger-Cats improving to 4-9, breaking the tie with the Ottawa Redblacks. Hamilton's win was very important, as they ended up gaining a game on the Riders in the overall standings. Remember: the CFL's crossover rules state that if the fourth place team in one division has a better record than the third place team in the other division, then the former reaches the playoffs and crosses over to the other division. If the aforementioned teams are tied, then no crossover takes place. Hamilton needs to rack up wins and hope the Riders keep slipping, or they'll have to rely on attempting to gain ground on the Montréal Alouettes in the East.
Week 16 is another abbreviated week; the last one of the season. It will kick off on Friday, September 23 with the Montréal Alouettes hosting the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, who can move within half of a game of second place with a win. On Saturday, September 24, the Ottawa Redblacks will host the Toronto Argonauts, and it will be followed by the BC Lions and the Calgary Stampeders meeting once again, this time in Vancouver.
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About the author
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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