B.C. Lions’ John White IV (3) runs the ball in for a touchdown past Montreal Alouettes’ Greg Reid, bottom right, during the second half of a CFL football game in Vancouver, on Saturday September 28, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Reilly leads B.C. Lions to gritty 25-23 win over Alouettes

QB tosses for 309 yards as Leos keep faint playoff hopes alive

VANCOUVER — The B.C. Lions kept their faint playoff hopes alive on Saturday, posting a gritty 25-23 win over the Montreal Alouettes.

Mike Reilly had 309 passing yards, a touchdown and an interception for the Lions (4-10).

He connected with Bryan Burnham and John White for TDs, and Sergio Castillo added four field goals, including a 48-yard kick.

Matt Shiltz filled in at quarterback for the Als (7-6), throwing for 177 yards, a touchdown and an interception. The 26-year-old Butler University grad also rushed for 62 yards and brought in a TD of his own.

Montreal’s usual starter, Vernon Adams Jr., was suspended after a helmet swinging incident against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers last week.

Anthony Pipkin and Eugene Lewis also found the endzone for the Alouettes.

Solid defensive performances from both sides limited the scoring to a string of field goals in the first half.

Castillo made three successful field goals for the Lions in quarters one and two, including a pair of 41-yard kicks, and Als kicker Boris Bede made a 16-yard attempt.

Castillo added another 48-yard field goal for the Lions midway through the fourth quarter.

The offensive dam broke less than a minute into the third frame when Shiltz connected with a wide-open Lewis midfield.

The receiver collected the pass and ran, uncontested, 69 yards into the end zone.

B.C. sputtered after the major strike, taking unnecessary offensive penalties that hemmed the Lions in their own zone and miscommunicating on defence.

Midway through the third quarter, the Lions defence split directly in front of Shiltz, clearing the quarterback’s path for a 29-yard run.

READ MORE: Reilly throws for 353 yards as Lions rout Redblacks 40-7

The play put the Alouettes on the goal line and Pipkin capitalized with a one-yard QB sneak to widen Montreal’s lead.

B.C. responded before the end of the third when Reilly sent an 18-yard pass sailing to Burnham just inside the end zone, cutting the Als lead to 17-15.

With seconds to go in the quarter, Reilly then found Lemar Durant deep in Montreal’s end for a 61-yard pass that set up a big scoring drive.

The five-play, 87-yard drive ended with White rushing four yards for another touchdown. The running back celebrated by climbing into the stands and handing the ball off to a child wearing an orange Lions toque.

Shiltz kept the game tight, however, after he was left wide open deep in the Lions end with just over five minutes to go in the game.

The quarterback ran seven yards for the major strike, but the Als couldn’t capitalize on a two-point conversion attempt that would have evened the score.

The Lions held off Montreal’s late-game push after Als running back William Stanback put his team in scoring position.

B.C.’s strong presence along the goal line and an apparent fumbled snap on Montreal’s third down prevented the visitors from crossing over into the end zone.

The loss prevents Montreal from clinching a playoff spot this week.

NOTES: Field judge Brian Chrupalo was led off the field in the third quarter after he was flattened by a player. … Castillo leads the league in percentage of field goals made with 91.4. … Shiltz made just his second CFL start on Saturday. His last came on Nov. 3, 2017 against the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

CFL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Friends, family suprise Current Swell singer and new wife with socially distant wedding

‘We just thought we were going over there to have a glass of champagne and do some paperwork’

‘How not to handle social isolation concerns’: Victoria police respond to confrontation with firearm

Police seize replica firearms after one resident confronts another over social distancing

Outreach initiative connects Sooke seniors to support amid COVID-19

Volunteers encouraged to sign up as need increases

Victoria company compares drone footage of city streets between August and now

Fewer cars, people seen on streets and at landmarks

As 240K apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

COVID-19 world update: 1,000 cases hit U.S. military; Good news in Spain, Portugal

Comprehensive collection of coronavirus news from around the world

Vancouver Island teen singer advances to American Idol top 20

Lauren Spencer-Smith performs Respect at outdoor concert in Hawaii

Businesses advised to prepare for federal, B.C. COVID-19 assistance

Canada Revenue Agency portal expected to open this week

Bars, cannabis sector eligible for $40B credit program from government bank

Applicants must go through their own banks to access the program

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Most Read