CALGARY — The Calgary Stampeders have opened a CFL season 7-0 for the first time since 1995 with a 27-18 win over the B.C. Lions on Saturday.
Stampeders quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell threw for 370 yards, including a 53-yard touchdown pass to Kamar Jorden.
Backup quarterback Nick Arbuckle scored a pair of touchdowns on one-yard carries. Rene Paredes kicked a 44-yard field goal for the hosts.
Jorden totalled 185 receiving yards in the game.
Jeremiah Johnson rushed for a touchdown and Bryan Burnham had a touchdown catch for the Lions, who fell to 2-4. Ty Long kicked a 40-yard field goal for B.C.
Lions quarterback Travis Lulay completed 23 of 36 pass attempts for 281 yards and was intercepted once.
Lulay’s eight-yard toss to Burnham in the end zone late in the fourth quarter cut the deficit to 27-17.
.@RealBBurnham closes the gap: 4:19 to go in 4th.
— BC Lions (@BCLions) August 5, 2018
Calgary led 25-10 early in the fourth after Arbuckle’s second short-yardage touchdown of the game and a Paredes convert.
Johnson, back in B.C.’s lineup after a July 14 ankle injury, scored a five-yard rushing touchdown late in the third.
A 57-yard punt return by B.C. running back Travon Van early in the quarter gave the Lions the ball on Calgary’s 21-yard line.
B.C. failed to capitalize on that field position, however, and turned the ball over on downs after three consecutive incomplete passes by Lulay.
Calgary led 17-3 at halftime in front of an announced crowd of 25,075 at McMahon Stadium.
Starting from Calgary’s eight-yard line late in the first half, Mitchell marched the Stampeders offence downfield with a 62-yard pass to Jorden, a 19-yard throw to DaVaris Daniels and a 22-yard toss to Marken Michel.
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Arbuckle’s one-yard plunge to score finished the drive with 43 seconds remaining in the half.
Paredes’ convert ticked on an upright, but was still good for the single point. He booted a 44-yard field goal earlier in the quarter.
The Lions turned the ball over on Calgary’s 27-yard line late in the first quarter when Stampeders linebacker Jameer Thurman grabbed a deflected ball.
The hosts scored on their first possession of the game. Mitchell scampered out of the pocket and connected with Jorden, who made an over-the-shoulder catch for a 53-yard major.
The Lions mustered a field goal on the game’s opening drive with Long good from 40 yards.
Calgary has a bye week before a road game Aug. 19 against the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The Lions are at home Thursday to the Edmonton Eskimos (5-2).
THE CANADIAN PRESS