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Argos use late FG to beat Stampeders

Jul 2, 2011 - 6:19 AM Calgary, AB (Sports Network) - Noel Prefontaine drilled a 43-yard field goal with 17 seconds remaining in regulation to give the Toronto Argonauts a thrilling 23-21 victory over the Calgary Stampeders in the season-opener at McMahon Stadium.

Cory Boyd rushed for 100 yards and one score on 17 carries to lead the Argonauts (1-0). Cleo Lemon finished with just 187 yards on 16-of-30 passing, but did throw for a touchdown in the win.

Henry Burris completed 26-of-37 passes for Calgary (0-1) for 293 yards and was intercepted once.

"Our defense played good football most of the night," Stampeders coach John Hufnagel said. "They just gave up enough position for them to kick the field goal."

On their first play in the final quarter, the Argonauts pushed their advantage to 17-6 with a two-yard touchdown run by Boyd.

Burris led the Stampeders down the field on Calgary's next possession and Joffrey Reynolds finished the drive with a two-yard score. Burris brought his team within a field goal of tying the game after connecting with Rob Cote on a two-point conversion.

After a quick possession by Toronto, Burris and company went right back to work and wasted little time regaining the lead. Once again Calgary's signal caller led the way down the field, but again the touchdown came on the ground, as Jon Cornish scampered into the end zone on a three-yard run, putting the Stampeders on top, 21-17.

However, the Argonauts never panicked, and matriculated down field on their next possession, eventually receiving a 25-yard field goal by Prefontaine to bring the team within one point of tying the contest.

The decision to kick the field goal was a risky one by Barker, but it paid off, as the defense for Toronto shut down Calgary's offense and gave the ball back to Lemon.

The quarterback for Toronto did his job and drove the Argos into Prefontaine's range and the veteran kicker did the rest, drilling a 43-yard kick to give the Argos the victory.

"It's the way we needed to win," Argos coach Jim Barker said. "I think we needed to come from behind."

Calgary struck early in the opening frame, as Rob Maver missed a 45-yard field goal, but still gave the Stampeders a single.

Maver redeemed himself later in the first quarter when he chipped in a 17-yard field goal, capping off a 15-play drive that ate up nearly eight minutes.

Calgary added another single early in the second stanza when Burke Dales blasted a 57-yard punt.

However, the Argonauts responded on their next drive, as Lemon connected with Brandon Rideau for an 18-yard scoring strike. The touchdown capped off a nine-play drive and gave Toronto a 7-5 edge.

It was an inauspicious start for the Stampeders in the second half, as Larry Taylor fumbled the opening kickoff.

Toronto was not able to fully capitalize on the mistake, but did receive a 24- yard field goal by Prefontaine.

Maver missed his second field goal in the quarter for the Stampeders, but the failed 34-yard attempt counted for a single, cutting Calgary's deficit to 10-6.

Game Notes

Toronto finished with 301 total yards in the contest...Calgary racked up 377 yards...It was the Argonauts' first win at McMahon Stadium since July of 2005.