Ivor Wynne Stadium
Location: Hamilton, ON
Date: December 3
Winning Coach: Jerry Williams
Most Valuable Player: Chuck Ealey, QB, Hamilton
Most Valuable Canadian: Ian Sunter, K, Hamilton
Hamilton’s Ivor Wynne Stadium played host to the Grey Cup for the first time since 1944 and fitting enough, the hometown Tiger-Cats advanced to the big game. Their opponents were the Saskatchewan Roughriders, who got past Edmonton and Winnipeg in close-scoring playoff games.
The Ticats jumped out on top 10-0 in the opening quarter. Hamilton’s Al Brenner intercepted a pass from Saskatchewan quarterback Ron Lancaster, setting up Chuck Ealey’s 16-yard touchdown pass to Dave Fleming.
Later in the quarter, Hamilton’s Bob Krouse blocked a Bob Pearce punt to help set up a 27-yard field goal by Ian Sunter. Krouse would partially block another punt later in the game.
The home side thought they went up 17-0 when Brenner picked off another Lancaster pass and returned the ball 27 yards for an apparent touchdown, only to have the play called back on an offside call against George Wells.
Saskatchewan tied the score by halftime. Lancaster connected with slotback Tom Campana on an eight-yard touchdown pass, while Jack Abendschan was successful on a 20-yard field goal attempt to make it 10-10. Saskatchewan’s George Reed gained 64 of his 93 total rushing yards in the quarter.
With 1:51 remaining in regulation, the Ticats put together a winning drive. Tony Gabriel came up with three big catches, his only three of the game. On the first play Ealey hit Gabriel over the middle for a 27-yard gain. Ealey went back to Gabriel for additional 12 yards, then one play later, the connection worked again for another 15 yards to set the Ticats on the Saskatchewan 41 with 51 seconds remaining.
The game ultimately came down to the final play. Sunter, a 19-year-old rookie place kicker who had only been on the field on two other occasions, split the uprights from 34 yards away to win the game for the Ticats.
Ealey completed 18 of 29 pass attempts for 291 yards and a touchdown. He was intercepted twice. Lancaster was 20 of 29 passing for 239 yards, one touchdown and a pair of interceptions.
Hamilton’s Garney Henley, the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player, led all players with 98 receiving yards.
Angelo Mosca went out a winner in his final CFL game. The two-time CFL All-Star was elected into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 1987.
It was the final time the Grey Cup was held in December.