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Alouettes rally in Winnipeg to win CFL opener

Jun 28, 2013 - 5:03 AM Winnipeg, MB (Sports Network) - Sean Whyte connected on all five of his field goal attempts, including a pair during a fourth quarter rally that sent the Montreal Alouettes to a 38-33 victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the CFL 2013 season opener.

The Bombers trailed by nine entering the fourth, but veteran Anthony Cavillo threw a 42-yard pass for his only touchdown and Whyte's 34-yard kick sent Winnipeg (1-0) in front for good. He added a 36-yarder late for extra cushion.

Cavillo threw for 264 yards and an interception on 20-for-35 efficiency for the Alouettes, who came one win short of a Grey Cup appearance last year and helped first-year head coach Dan Hawkins to his first career win on Thursday.

S.J. Green hauled in a touchdown on five catches for 119 yards, Chris Jennings added a rushing score and Montreal picked off Bombers quarterback Buck Pierce three times in the victory.

Pierce threw for two scores on 258 yards, but Winnipeg (0-1) was held scoreless in the fourth quarter. He was 19-for-34 and was picked off on his team's last possession.

The Blue Bombers started slow and trailed 23-13 at the break, but scored two quick touchdowns in the third to surge ahead.

Jade Etienne's 65-yard reception led to Pierce's 8-yard touchdown throw to Clarence Denmark, and after Montreal went nowhere on its ensuing possession, Demond Washington returned a punt 80 yards to give Winnipeg its first lead.

The Alouettes managed just a single in the period and Justin Palardy added 23 and 48-yard field goals to open up a 33-24 Winnipeg lead and conclude a 19- point third quarter swing. The Bombers, though, failed to score again.

Montreal needed three plays to set up its first score after Geoff Tisdale picked off Pierce at his team's own 40-yard line.

An 11-yard run by Noel Devine preceded Calvillo's 26-yard pass to Green. Jennings then high stepped for a 3-yard touchdown and the Alouettes quickly doubled their advantage on a 78-yard punt return by Tyron Carrier.

Palardy kicked a 35-yard field goal and Washington's 49-yard interception return of Calvillo led to Winnipeg's first touchdown, a 3-yard pass from Pierce to Chris Matthews to make 14-10.

The Blue Bombers, though, picked up just a single and a forfeited an Alouettes safety in the second quarter, and Montreal extended its lead to 23-13 at the half after Whyte's third field goal of the quarter. He connected on 36 and 35- yarders before his 9-yard boot opened up a 10-point lead.

Game Notes

Cavillo is beginning his 20th season ... It was the first regular season game ever played at Winnipeg's new home, Investors Group Field ... Bombers head coach Tim Burke is entering his first full season as head coach ... Devine ran for 58 yards on 12 carries ... Etienne had three catches for 79 yards.