TORONTO -- Like the old saying goes: "All good things must come to an end".
The Toronto Argonauts are no exception to that rule; their Friday night loss to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats serving as all the evidence you would need to support it.
After stringing together four come-from-behind victories on the road, the Boatmen returned home in Week 15 and fell behind once again in the first half.
This time, however, there was no comeback.
“If you keep putting yourself behind, it’s going to catch up to you,” head coach Scott Milanovich told Argonauts.ca.
“We made a little run there in the third quarter, but give them credit, they were able to stay on the field and get some points and they outscored us in the fourth. Give them a lot of credit, they are a good football team, they are well coached and they got the better of us for sure,” he added.
With the win, the Ticats are now just four points back of their provincial rivals for top spot in the East Division.
The two teams will meet once again on Thanksgiving Monday in Guelph, where the Ticats will have an opportunity to pull even closer to the Argos for the highly-coveted spot atop the standings.
Milanovich, however, isn’t concerned with the road ahead. All he can guarantee is that his Argonauts are going to continue to worry about themselves and themselves only.
“We’re going to go back to work, exactly what’s going to happen? I don’t know. It’s just been five minutes after this game,” he said.
Despite the result, there were some encouraging aspects to Toronto’s play on Friday night.
First and foremost, 2012 Most Outstanding Player Chad Owens made his return to the lineup. Owens was quiet by his standards, registering six catches for 52 yards, while returning three punts for 19 yards.
Milanovich was impressed with his dynamic star’s performance, and urged everyone to not delve too deep into his modest numbers.
“(Owens) was borderline cleared a week ago; it became a pain tolerance issue and a risk/reward issue for us to put him out there. Obviously these two games against Hamilton are critical games,” he said.
“I felt like he played well, I felt like he caught the ball well. He doesn’t look like a guy that has been sitting out, so that’s a positive to get a healthy Chad Owens back; hopefully he can make some damage for us.”
Another positive sight was having injured quarterback Ricky Ray back on the team’s 42-man roster.
Ray suited up as the team’s third-string quarterback this week, the first time he’s put on a Double Blue uniform since suffering a shoulder injury in Week 9.
There’s no doubt the future Hall-of-Famer has made some positive strides, but Milanovich isn’t ready to commit to him starting just yet.
“He has made a lot of improvements as you guys have seen him out there throw, but I would like to see him get a little bit better; thankfully we have got some time,” he said.
“Collaros has done a tremendous job, he didn’t win five of the last six by himself and he didn’t lose this one so we have a ton of faith in him. When Ricky is ready to go he is going to go, it would be great if it was next week but if it is not we will wait until he is ready.”
With files from Argonauts.ca