SURREY – If the Calgary Stampeders were looking to get the BC Lions’ attention, consider it done.
With all the talk surrounding the first-place and then-undefeated Saskatchewan Roughriders last week, last year’s Western Champions proved that they are still one of the teams to beat out West. A 42-27 home win and one that the Leos kept their eye on while enjoying a bye week.
“I watched every second of that game and it’s the best game I have watched all year”, BC running back Andrew Harris said. “It was exciting, a lot of big plays with the two big teams in the west going at it, it was a good matchup.”
Harris and the Leos are coming off a home win over Winnipeg following an uncharacteristic showing in Toronto the week before. There has been some concern over the consistency of the BC offence and Harris says that a win over a division rival could be just what he and his team need to start building some continuity.
“(Calgary) is the best team in the CFL right now, they just knocked off an undefeated team and they are playing the best football so you know they are hot” he continued. “We want to match that and obviously put a show on at BC place, at home and we want to get a win and instill some confidence back on offence, defence and special teams. It’s going to be a solid team effort and obviously there are little things within the game we have to work on and we are excited to get back on the field.”
At the centre of BC’s attack is quarterback Travis Lulay who had a solid showing before the bye but believes a good week of practice along with the break could go a long way reaching the expectations they and many others had set out at the beginning of the season.
“I think we are excited to enter this next phase”, Lulay told BCLions.com. “I think we have shown flashes of who we want to be. We have played a lot of good situational football and we need to understand that but we do have high expectations for ourselves.
“This is an opportunity for us to play a team who has been as arguably good as anybody to this point in the season. To get a win at this point in the week would be huge, we will just have to play a complete game to get it.”
Lulay and the offence will be looking to execute a bit better, getting timing routes down and finding a balanced attack between Harris and the receivers. Defensively, the challenge is to match Calgary’s physicality especially against arguably the most punishing receiver in the game Nik Lewis.
“This is definitely one (you look forward to), whenever you are playing against Calgary; you know you are in for a tough physical battle”, said defensive lineman Keron Williams. “They have a tremendous running back and running game. Nik Lewis is there to catch the ball on the slots on the first downs and critical situations.”
Making matters all the more important for BC is the fact that following Saturday’s matchup, it is another five weeks before they take on either of the two teams that they are chasing for first in the West and have the ability to control a four-point swing.
- With files from BCLions.com