By Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press
OTTAWA — Quarterback Trevor Harris had a solid outing, throwing two touchdowns over 345 yards to lead as Ottawa Redblacks opened their regular season with a 40-17 win over the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Thursday night at TD Place.
Harris went 26 for 36 and also threw an interception for Ottawa (1-0).
Things didn’t go so well for the Roughriders (1-1), who lost starting quarterback Zach Collaros in the second quarter.
Collaros, who was sacked in the first quarter, completed four of 10 passes for 106 yards, one touchdown and one interception, in his brief appearance.
Brandon Bridge stepped in to replace Collaros and struggled, going 13 for 22 for 145 yards with one interception.
The Redblacks got significant contributions from rookie kicker Lewis Ward, who went 3 for 4 in his CFL debut in front of 24,224 fans.
Leading 25-14 to start the second half, the Redblacks padded their lead midway through the third quarter as Harris connected with Spencer for a 56-yard touchdown pass. Harris ran in for the two-point conversion to take a commanding 33-14 lead.
A four-yard pass to William Powell in the fourth quarter made it Ottawa 40-17
The only scoring for Saskatchewan in the second half came on a 35-yard field goal by Brett Lauther.
Ottawa got off to a solid start and never looked back.
The Redblacks opened the game with back-to-back field goals by Ward and kept Saskatchewan’s offence off the field for much of the first quarter, but with 31 seconds remaining Collaros connected with Jordan Williams-Lambert for a 32-yard touchdown pass giving the Roughriders a 7-6 lead.
Ottawa regained the lead as Jonathan Rose stepped in front of Shaq Evans for the interception and raced 55 yards into the end zone. A two-point conversion gave Ottawa a 14-7 lead, but Saskatchewan answered right back as Duron Carter, playing as a defensive back, had his own interception and returned the ball 28 yards to tie the game 14-14.
A 15-yard run by Powell midway through the second quarter and a 44-yard Ward field goal put Ottawa up 25-14 at the half.
Ottawa is back in action next Thursday as they head to Calgary to face the Stampeders, while Saskatchewan hosts Montreal June 30th.
(The Canadian Press)