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Edmonton escapes with win over Roughriders

Nov 3, 2013 - 1:27 AM Regina, SK ( - Jamal Miles brought back a punt return 79 yards for a touchdown with just over a minute remaining in regulation to give the Edmonton Eskimos a 30-26 win versus the Saskatchewan Roughriders at Mosaic Stadium.

Edmonton (4-14) quarterbacks Mike Reilly, Kerry Joseph and Jonathan Crompton combined to hit on just nine passes for a combined 112 yards and a single score, but still the Eskimos managed to snap a five-game slide. Reilly also led the charge on the ground for the Esks with seven carries for 60 yards.

Tino Sunseri and Drew Willy stood in at quarterback for Saskatchewan (11-7), combining to throw for 324 yards, but only one touchdown on the day. Running back Chris Garrett carried the ball 23 times for 152 yards and a score for the hosts as they dropped their final two games of the regular season.

With nine receptions for more than 100 yards, Taj Smith joined teammates Weston Dressler and Chris Getzlaf with at least 1,000 yards receiving this season for the Roughriders. Geroy Simon notched three catches to extend his consecutive games streak with at least one reception to 188 in a row

Edmonton opened the meeting with 10 straight points, thanks to a 25-yard field goal by Grant Shaw and a 56-yard interception return for a major by Rennie Curran.

The Riders closed the gap late in the period thanks to a 23-yard field goal by Chris Milo and then tied the contest at 10-10 thanks to a five-yard TD strike from Willy to Eron Riley.

However, before the first half could draw to a close, Shaw struck again for the visitors, this time from 40 yards out to provide the Esks with a 13-10 edge at the break.

The clubs traded scores in the third frame, beginning with an 11-yard field goal by Milo for Saskatchewan. Shaw's 25-yard field goal just under four minutes later kept the game close, while an eight-yard TD run from Garrett put the Roughriders in front by a 20-16 score.

At the end of the third, Crompton found John White on a 12-yard TD pass play, putting the Esks back on top, 23-20.

Milo connected on field goals of 22 and eight yards in the fourth for Saskatchewan, but late in the game it was Miles who played the hero for Edmonton.

The Roughriders had a chance to steal the win, but on the final play of the game Sunseri was taken down for a sack.

Saskatchewan controlled the ball for more than 38 minutes on the day, generating 525 yards on 100 snaps. The Eskimos ran 55 plays and produced a mere 240 yards in the triumph.

Despite the setback, the Riders are still heading to the playoffs and will face British Columbia on Nov. 10 in the West Division Semi-Finals. The winner of that outing will go up against Calgary at McMahon Stadium on Nov. 17 for the right to compete in the 101st Grey Cup Championship in Regina a week later.

With the victory the Eskimos snapped a three-game slide in the series and moved to 114-85-2 versus Saskatchewan in regular-season bouts dating back to 1949.