June 7, 2024

3 stats that defined Montreal’s Week 1 win over Winnipeg

Jason Halstead/CFL.ca

WINNIPEG — Defence wins championships and also helps to start a season 1-0.

In last year’s Grey Cup, the Montreal Alouettes’ defence helped them capture a championship and in the rematch of the big game on Thursday night, their defence also guided them into get their first win of the 2024 campaign.

Montreal defeated the Winnipeg Blue Bombers at Princess Auto Stadium on Thursday night in the first game of the 2024 CFL season thanks in large part to their defence and a pair of TDs from the hero of that game last November, Tyson Philpot.

Here are three stats that made the difference in Montreal’s Week 1 win over Winnipeg.

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2 – TYSON’S TOTAL TOUCHDOWNS

Tyson Philpot scored the final touchdown of the 2023 season so it was only fitting that he scored the opening touchdown of the 2024 season as well. His first score on Thursday night was a 14-yard catch-and-run into the end zone to put the Alouettes up 7-3, their first lead of the contest and one that they wouldn’t relinquish for the rest of the game.

The 23-year-old’s next touchdown was on a trick play in the fourth quarter. Cody Fajardo handed off to running back Walter Fletcher who then tossed it right back to his quarterback. Fajardo then aired it out to a wide open Philpot and the receiver took off for a 76-yard touchdown score.

3 – TURNOVERS FORCED

Montreal’s defence was a massive part of their championship-winning season in 2023 and the unit picked up right where they left off this when they hit the field for the first time this season.

The Als’ defence forced three turnovers in the victory; a Marc-Antoine Dequoy interception, a Darnell Sankey/Dionte Ruffin forced fumble/fumble recovery and a fumbled punt recovery by Bryce Cosby. It was an excellent opening performance from the Alouettes’ stellar D.

7 – DEFENSIVE PLAYS

A pair of linebackers had standout performances on Thursday night as Darnell Sankey and Tyrice Beverette both tallied seven total defensive plays in their team’s win.

Sankey had seven defensive tackles, a knockdown and a forced fumble while Beverette five defensive tackles, one special teams tackle, one knockdown and one forced fumble.

Both were integral in Montreal’s ability to shut down Zach Collaros and the Bombers offence for the majority of the game.

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