August 27, 2023

Elks see a season of possibilities after home win

The Canadian Press

EDMONTON — Chris Jones got a Gatorade bath. Jake Ceresna spoke of curses being lifted. Punter, the Edmonton Elks’ mascot, appeared to perform makeshift snow angels on the turf at Commonwealth Stadium while TSN interviewed Elks players. Quarterback Tre Ford spoke of the playoffs.

The end of the Elks’ home losing streak — a 22-game, 1,415-day stretch that had left the club 0-for-this decade — is finally over, thanks to a 30-20 win over the Ottawa REDBLACKS.

Ford, the eighth overall pick in the 2022 CFL Draft, delivered a career game, throwing for 317 yards and a touchdown while rushing for 72 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Keying the Elks to 469 yards of net offence, the team got the win they’d been chasing for what felt like forever.

» It’s Over! Elks down REDBLACKS to end home losing streak
» Through the Lens: Ottawa at Edmonton
» Box Score: REDBLACKS at Elks by the numbers
» Sign up and watch CFL games on CFL+ in the U.S. and Internationally


“Hopefully one of many” Ford told TSN’s Brit Dort. “Hopefully we’ll keep getting it and put ourselves in a position to make the playoffs.”

It was a playoff-like energy at Commonwealth on Sunday night, where the 23,825 fans finally began to let go of their fear of yet another heartbreaking finish when the game got down to its final four minutes or so and their team up 30-14. The Elks had found creative ways to amass their 0-9 start this year, so you could understand the extra time taken.

On Sunday, they weren’t disappointed. That 0-9 start is starting to fade into the rearview when you pair the home win with last week’s win in Hamilton. That’s right folks, the Edmonton Elks are on a winning streak.

“I think the big thing is us just sticking together,” Ford said of the lessons learned having come out the other side of these tough times.

“Last week when we were in Hamilton, our offence stalled in the third quarter and the defence helped give us a spark. I feel like offensively today, we came out and we were able to play for four quarters. I thought the defence did a great job closing out the game. (The lesson is) just playing together and moving forward as a team.”

Despite that slow start, the Elks are a game behind the 3-8 Calgary Stampeders. Suddenly, two teams with bad records are heading into an intriguing pair of games with the OK Tire Labour Day Weekend and the Labour Day rematch game next on the schedule.

“They’ve got a great team but so do we,” Ford said. “As long as we execute and play four quarters, it’s going to be fun to play. They’ve got a good defence, they’ve got a dynamic offence. I’m just excited to see how it all goes.”

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