VANCOUVER — Nathan Rourke threw for an eye-popping 477 yards Saturday, main the B.C. Lions to a 46-14 dismantling of the Edmonton Elks.
The rookie CFL quarterback accomplished 34 of 37 makes an attempt with 5 landing passes, and added a 14-yard speeding main.
Michael O’Connor got here in underneath centre for the Lions (6-1) late within the fourth quarter however didn’t file a single throw as B.C. opted to hurry to shut out the sport.
Edmonton (2-6) slotted Taylor Cornelius again in at QB after Tre Ford was added to the six-game injured checklist Friday, however as soon as once more struggled towards a B.C. facet that took a 59-15 win in Week 1 motion.
Cornelius threw for 183 yards on Saturday, connecting on 15 of 26 makes an attempt with one landing go and an interception. He was sacked 5 instances.
Maleek Irons added a speeding main for the Elks, who had been coming off a bye week.
Either side stuttered to start out the sport, with the Elks turning the ball over on their first two possessions.
The Lions capitalized on the second error. Rourke linked with Dominique Rhymes on a two-yard landing go, capping a six-play, 49-yard scoring drive that put B.C. up 7-0 halfway by means of the primary quarter.
Edmonton responded, steadily working its approach down the sector earlier than Cornelius escaped the pocket and fired a 19-yard bullet to Kenny Lawler ultimately zone. The seven-play, 69-yard drive marked the Elks’ solely factors of the primary half.
B.C. was removed from by means of.
The Lions began their subsequent possession with a 49-yard go from Rourke to Fortunate Whitehead, who sprinted into Edmonton territory. The younger QB adopted up with a 16-yard toss to Keon Hatcher, then tacked on a 14-yard run. Earlier than the top of the opening body, he sailed one other ball to Rhymes for a significant.
The pair linked as soon as once more halfway by means of the second when Rhymes, underneath stress, leapt as much as reel in a 15-yard toss for his third TD of the sport, a play that boosted B.C.’s cushion to 20-7.
Simply minutes later, Rourke discovered Whitehead open and the speedy receiver darted 37 yards down the sector, outrunning Nafees Lyon for a 69-yard landing.
B.C. then scored on its fifth straight possession when Whyte hit a 47-yard subject aim.
Rourke ended the half with one more TD, discovering Bryan Burnham alongside the sideline ultimately zone with six seconds left within the half. The veteran receiver made certain to get a foot down for the foremost.
Saturday’s sport marked Burnham’s return to the lineup after struggling damaged ribs and a collapsed lung in a crushing hit by Toronto Argonauts defensive again Shaq Richardson on June 25.
Rourke completed the primary half with 386 passing yards and 5 landing passes and B.C. went into the locker room up 37-7.
The membership nonetheless had extra to provide.
Early within the third, Lions defensive lineman Mathieu Betts sacked Cornelius for the second time within the sport. Edmonton recorded a four-yard loss and B.C. added two factors for a security.
Rourke confirmed he has greater than only a good arm halfway by means of the body. Seeing a gap, the 24-year-old Canadian sprinted seven yards and shook off a success by Duron Carter so as to add a seven-yard speeding TD to pad his rating line.
The Elks appeared poised to finish the scoring drought earlier than the shut of the quarter however Sione Teuhema spoiled the occasion with a sack. It was the fifth time the Lions took down Cornelius on the evening.
Irons lastly chalked up some factors for the guests early within the fourth, sprinting six yards into the top zone. The landing lower Edmonton’s deficit to 46-14.
The Lions shall be again in motion subsequent Saturday once they tackle the Stampeders in Calgary. The Elks will host the Saskatchewan Roughriders later that evening.
FOOTNOTES: Rourke broke his personal file for passing yards by a Canadian quarterback in a single sport. He hit the historic mark earlier this season. Burnham hauled in six catches for 82 yards and moved into fourth spot on the Lions’ all-time receiving yards checklist. Elks kicker Ryan Meskell made his CFL debut. Lions’ linebacker Ben Hladik, a Vernon, B.C. native, recorded his first profession interception late within the fourth quarter.