Acklin leads Redblacks aerial attack against Argonauts for 1st win of season


The Ottawa Redblacks are no longer the only winless team in the CFL.

Jaelon Acklin had a touchdown reception and led his team with 144 receiving yards as the Redblacks beat the Toronto Argonauts 23-13 at BMO Field on Sunday.

Caleb Evans completed 24 of 29 pass attempts and threw for 286 yards and had two touchdowns for the Redblacks, whose record improved to one win and six losses.

McLeod Bethel-Thompson completed just 26 of 40 pass attempts for 340 yards and a touchdown for the Argonauts (3-3), who saw their winning streak against the Redblacks at BMO Field snapped at five games.

The Rougenoirs opened the scoring on their first drive of the game when kicker Lewis Ward scored a field goal from 46 yards. The field position for Ottawa was established by a 46-yard pass from Evans to Acklin earlier in practice.

The Argos tied the game 3-3 in their ensuing practice. Boris Bede scored a 42-yard field goal with 7:36 left in the first quarter.

The Rougenoirs resumed their three-point lead when Ward scored a 31-yard field goal with one second remaining. Ottawa led 6-3 at the start of the second quarter.

Toronto responded with the game’s first major. Bethel-Thompson found Brandon Banks for a 29-yard touchdown pass as they took a 10-6 lead after Bede’s successful converted kick with 7:17 left in the second quarter.

Bede scored his second field goal from 32 yards, giving Toronto a 13-6 lead with 55 seconds left until halftime.

Ottawa quickly moved the ball down before Evans found Acklin for a 30-yard catch. Ward’s extra point tied the game 13-13 and that was the score going into the second half.

Acklin’s reception allowed the CFL’s top receiver to reach 100 receiving yards in his third straight game.

In the third quarter, the Rouge et Noir regained the lead in their first game of the half when Ward scored his third field goal of the game to give Ottawa a 16-13 lead.

In the fourth quarter, things accelerated for Toronto. While defending deep in their territory, Argos defensive lineman Wynton McManis received a foul conduct penalty for throwing the shoe of a Rougenoir player he had tackled.

With the position short in the field, Evans found Nate Behar for a seven-yard TD pass. Lewis’ converted kick gave Ottawa a 23-13 lead in the fourth quarter.

Toronto’s Chris Edwards was also assessed a bad conduct penalty after Behar’s touchdown.

The Argos never recovered from Ottawa’s score, despite several offensive drives facing a 10-point deficit.

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