July 19th, 2024

Winnipeg Blue Bombers top Ottawa Redblacks 25-16 for first win of CFL season

By Judy Owen, The Canadian Press on July 5, 2024.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers quarterback Chris Streveler (17) hands off to Brady Oliveira (20) during first half CFL action against the Ottawa Redblacks in Winnipeg Friday, July 5, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

WINNIPEG – Chris Streveler and Brady Oliveira used their legs to help propel Winnipeg to a 25-16 win over the Ottawa Redblacks on Friday for the Blue Bombers’ first victory of the season.

Streveler, who was starting at quarterback in place of the injured Zach Collaros, rushed 13 times for 79 yards and one touchdown. He was 13-of-21 passing for 127 yards and no interceptions in his first start since October 2019.

Oliveira had 23 carries for 129 yards and five catches for 37 yards in front of 28,719 happy fans at Princess Auto Stadium.

Bombers placekicker Sergio Castillo was good on all six of his field-goal attempts, including a pair from 53 yards. Winnipeg improved to 1-4 while Ottawa fell to 2-2.

Redblacks starting quarterback Dru Brown was injured late in the second quarter and didn’t return. He was hit by Bombers defensive back Redha Kramdi, who was called for roughing the passer.

Dustin Crum replaced Brown and completed eight of 11 pass attempts for 102 yards with one interception.

Castillo also booted field goals from 28, 13, 49 and 18 yards and made one convert.

Running back Ryquell Armstead scored a four-yard TD for the Redblacks. Ottawa kicker Lewis Ward connected on field goals from 18, 51 and 35 yards.

The game was tied 3-3 after the first quarter and the Bombers led 13-3 at halftime and 19-10 heading into the fourth.

Castillo booted a 28-yarder on Winnipeg’s first possession at 5:55, a drive that included a designed run play by Streveler on third-and-two that went for a 27-yard gain.

Ward and Castillo then exchanged field goals from 18 and 53 yards, respectively, to make it 6-3.

Winnipeg put together a run-based 11-play, 70-yard touchdown drive capped by Streveler’s one-yard push over the goal line at 12:51. Oliveira rushed for 53 of those yards, including a 26-yard gain.

The Redblacks responded by getting down to Winnipeg’s 21-yard line, but Armstead fumbled a lateral pass from Crum and Bombers defensive back Evan Holm recovered.

Ottawa opened the second half with another fumble, this one by Crum after Bombers defensive end Willie Jefferson knocked the ball loose and recovered it near midfield.

The turnover ended with Castillo’s 13-yard field goal at 8:15.

Crum marched the Redblacks down for Armstead’s TD run at 12:51 to make it 16-10.

Castillo booted a 53-yarder with three seconds left in the third quarter. Crum was then intercepted by Bombers defensive back Terrell Bonds, but Winnipeg couldn’t capitalize.

Oliveira sat out a few plays late in the third quarter but returned to action in the fourth.

Castillo knocked through a 48-yard field goal six minutes into the fourth to stretch Winnipeg’s lead to 22-10, followed by Ward’s 51-yarder at 8:24.

Bombers linebacker Kyrie Wilson was called for unnecessary roughness, moving the Redblacks to Winnipeg’s 49-yard line.

Crum then kept the ball for gains of five and 12 yards, but Wilson made up for his mistake on the next play and sacked Crum for a loss of eight yards. Ward lined up and kicked a 35-yarder to make it 22-16 with 2:25 left.

Streveler targeted Oliveira through the air and on the ground in the dying minutes, but also kept the ball himself on a play that drew an Ottawa face-masking penalty.

Castillo finished things off with an 18-yarder with five seconds left.


Bombers: Host the Calgary Stampeders on July 12.

Redblacks: Play the Elks in Edmonton on July 14.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 5, 2024.

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