Ottawa REDBLACKS Kick Off Canada Day Weekend With a Win Over the Elks
In the late ’90s, March 21, 1999, to be exact, Shemar Moore stood on the stage at Madison Square Garden at the Daytime Emmy Awards and exclaimed, “The streak is over!” Having been nominated 18 times previously, Susan Lucci was finally awarded the Emmy for Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series. On April 6, 2014, after having won every one of his Wrestlemania matches, 21 to be exact, WWE superstar The Undertaker lost, thus ending The Streak and one of the most impressive streaks in professional sports came to an end on September 20, 1998, when baseball star Cal Ripken Jr., who has played 2,632 consecutive games (a record that is nowhere close to being broken) decided to end the streak by sitting out a game.
The Undertakers streak, storytelling notwithstanding, was very impressive. When it ended, wrestling fans were left in shock. Cal Ripken’s streak gave him the title of Iron Man and proved he was the most dependable player in baseball. When Lucci’s streak ended, it was a joyous and phenomenal moment for an actor who had been placed in the elite of her craft and now had the award to back it up.
Last night, on Bank Street, another streak ended as the Ottawa REDBLACKS won a home game for the first time in over 640 days. That number is somewhat misleading, though, more of a soundbite; of course, they don’t play in January. More accurately, the REDBLACKS haven’t won a home game since the 2021 season. September 28, 2021, to be exact.
It’s been a long time coming, and that streak is over. To be clear, this wasn’t a close game; it wasn’t decided by a last-minute field goal. It was a one-sided game, and the REDBLACKS defeated the Edmonton Elks 26-7.
All three phases of the game, offence, defence and special teams, were firing on all cylinders. REDBLACKS quarterback Tyrie Adams threw for 185 yards and a touchdown, not bad for his first start. The defence had four sacks and three interceptions. Kicker Lewis Ward was back to being consistent as he went 4/4 on field goals, his longest being 50 yards.
The naysayers may comment, “Well, this win came against an Edmonton team that hasn’t won all year,” that is an accurate statement, but what counts is wins and losses.
The REDBLACKS can only play the teams put before them. Next week the REDBLACKS go to Hamilton, another team without a win, and if they are successful, they put themselves in a great spot in the Eastern Division. No one is suggesting crowning the REDBLACKS Grey Cup champions today, but they played to their potential last night.
Perhaps the most exciting aspect was watching the audience at TD Place react to the win: part celebratory, part relief, but all joy.
The pre-planned post-game firework show to kick off Canada Day weekend seemed even more symbolic as the REDBLACKS ended their home-losing skid.
Another streak has ended, and hopefully, the REDBLACKS can now mount an impressive winning streak.
For those sceptical about the REDBLACKS and taking a break from attending games, it’s time to spread the word.
The Ottawa REDBLACKS are back!
Photo: Courtesy facebook.com/CFLREDBLACKS