Argos lose again as Montreal clinches playoff spot

Anthony Calvillo threw for 216 yards and a touchdown, and the playoff-bound Montreal Alouettes beat the Toronto Argonauts, 27-8, on Saturday at Rogers Centre.

The Argos (3-10) hung tough in the first half, but ultimately fell victim to the CFL’s top-ranked defence, which limited them to just 218 yards and forced three turnovers.

After an ineffective first-half performance, Toronto head coach Bart Andrus replaced Cody Pickett with Kerry Joseph at quarterback.

Joseph’s numbers were no more impressive than Pickett’s, as he completed 8 of 15 passes for 46 yards after Pickett was just 7-17 for 64 yards.

Trailing 11-1, Kevin Eiben gave Toronto hope with his third interception of the season with 9:23 to go in the third, and punter Justin Medlock added to that with a first-down run on a botched punt snap.

Jamal Robertson capped the drive with an eight-yard touchdown run to pull the Argos within three.

However, that was as close as they would get, as Damon Duval added a pair of field goals to extend the margin to 17-8.

As Joseph tried to rally the Argos, he lost a fumble that was returned 61 yards for a touchdown by Chip Cox that put the game on ice.

Montreal (11-2) opened the scoring when Calvillo connected with Jamel Richardson on a 10-yard scoring strike, and Duval kicked a field goal at the end of the first quarter to jump out to a 10-0 lead.

Despite allowing the fewest sacks in the league entering play Saturday, Montreal saw Calvillo go down three times in the opening quarter and four overall in the first half.

Calvillo still was able to make plays with his legs, as he picked up 30 yards on a first-quarter run to set up the game’s initial score.

Penalties and missed opportunities were the story early for the Argos. In the first half, a pair of big punt returns were called back due to penalties, and Medlock’s first field goal attempt was blocked.

The Argos got a point when the Alouettes recovered in the end zone to make the score 10-1 late in the second quarter.

Robertson was the lone bright spot on an otherwise bleak day for Toronto, as he rushed for 77 yards and the lone touchdown while also adding three receptions.

The Argonauts travel to Saskatchewan next Saturday to take on the Roughriders.