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REGINA — Bringing a 1-3 record, a two-game losing streak and some offensive struggles that had been documented by their head coach into Week 6, the Calgary Stampeders knew they needed something big on Saturday.
In a very complete battle with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, they got it.
Rene Paredes’ 50-yard field goal snapped the Stamps’ losing streak, securing them a wild 33-31 win. The veteran kicker was his usual, clutch self, making all four of his attempts on the night.
Jake Maier — the anchor of that offence, whose play dictates how well and how soundly criticized the group is — had his best game of the season. The 26-year-old pivot was 26-37 for 315 yards, a pair of touchdowns and one interception. The Stamps’ defence stepped up when it was needed the most, getting to quarterback Mason Fine twice late in the game as part of a six-sack night. Fine filled in for an injured Trevor Harris, whose fourth-quarter leg injury forced him to be carted off of the field to a standing O from concerned Riders fans.
» Depth Chart: SSK | CGY
» Through the Lens: Stamps at Riders
» Box Score: Stamps at Riders by the numbers
» Recap: Stamps win a thriller over Riders to close out Week 6
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“We were craving something like this,” Maier told TSN’s Brit Dort after the euphoria of the win might have worn off a tiny bit.
“We really needed it for our confidence, momentum. It’s just one game, but it’s a game we’re never going to forget. We’re just happy to be on the right side of it.”
As Maier was being interviewed, Stamps’ d-lineman Julian Howsare shouted his encouragement to his quarterback. Maier reciprocated the love.
“They’ve had our back all year and they played championship-level football all year. It’s really been the offensive side of the ball that hasn’t held up their end of the bargain,” he said.
“Things happen, man…I’m not a super believer in luck or fortune or whatever. But you know, the ball just bounced his way,” Maier said, referring to Tevin Jones‘ Hail Mary touchdown that helped put the Riders up with under a minute to go.
“It’s just good that as an offence again, staying resilient. The game’s not over, especially in this league. You learn that all the time. It’s just good that we did it together.”