Pierce, Blue Bombers rout Tiger Cats
Winnipeg, MB (Sports Network) - Buck Pierce threw for 288 yards and a major on an efficient 21-of-30 passing as the Winnipeg Blue Bombers thumped the Hamilton Tiger Cats, 34-12, on Friday.
Pierce hadn't played in the team's previous eight games due to torn ligaments and a torn muscle in his right foot, which he suffered on July 13 against the Edmonton Eskimos.
Chad Simpson rushed for 134 yards on 19 carries, while William Ford and Alex Brink both recorded majors for the Blue Bombers (3-9), who snapped a four-game slide.
Kito Poblah caught a touchdown pass and Terrance Edwards caught four balls for 88 yards, while Justin Palardy booted four field goals in the victory.
"I'm glad Buck's back," Winnipeg head coach Tim Burke said. "It was a combination of things that led to our offensive success, and Buck is a big part of that."
Henry Burris threw for 156 yards on just 11-of-24 passing, while Avon Cobourne ran for 77 yards on 18 carries in the setback.
Luca Congi accounted for all of Hamilton's points with four field goals. The Ti-Cats (4-8) have lost six of their last seven games.
With the game tied, 9-9, in the third quarter, Winnipeg got the ball on its own 17 following a two-and-out with just over eight minutes to go in the third quarter.
Pierce led an effective 8-play, 93-yard drive -- highlighted by a 24-yard completion to Rory Kohlert. A face mask call on the defense added 15 yards to the end of the play, setting the Bombers up with a first down on the Hamilton 30. Brink capped the drive with a one-yard touchdown push to make it 16-7.
Congi knocked through a 46-yarder on the ensuing Ti-Cats possession, but Winnipeg answered with another long drive on its next touch, going 74 yards in nine plays before Palardy made it 19-12 with an 11-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter.
The Bombers put the game away on their next possession as Pierce led an eight- play, 71-yard march to the Hamilton seven before hooking up with Poblah for the score and a 26-12 lead.
Ford finished the rout with a 17-yard spring to the end zone with less than two minutes remaining.
The Bombers opened the scoring on their second possession of the game as Pierce led the squad 57 yards in six plays down to the Hamilton eight before Palardy connected on a chip-shot 15-yard field goal for the early lead.
Hamilton drew even late in the opening quarter when Congi knocked a 37-yarder through the uprights.
Winnipeg grabbed the lead back early in the second quarter as Palardy capped a nine-play, 46-yard march with a 28-yard field goal.
The Bombers' defense came up with a big play on the ensuing Ti-Cats possession when Burris completed a pass to Andrew Fantuz, who fumbled and it was recovered by Alex Suber on their own 54.
From there, Winnipeg went 32 yards in six plays and Palardy was good again from 31 yards out to make it 9-3.
On the ensuing Hamilton touch, the Ti-Cats put together a six-play, 66-yard drive and Congi finished it with a 39-yard field goal to cut the deficit to 9-6 at the break.
Hamilton got the ball to begin the third quarter and quickly tied the contest at nine via a 16-yard field goal from Congi.
Winnipeg is 11-5 in Pierce's last 16 starts dating back to last season ... Burke earned his first CFL win ... The Bombers have won five straight meetings with the Tigers Cats, and lead the all-time series between the teams, 59-45.
09/21 23:45:03 ET