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Golf: Pringle breaks CFL record in rout

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posted on Jul, 17 2003 @ 06:41 AM
The record still belongs to a No. 34 but the name has changed.

Eskimos running back Mike Pringle, wearing the same sweater number used by George Reed in his prime, broke the Canadian Football Hall of Fame member's 28-year-old CFL rushing record during a lopsided 52-15 victory over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on a wet and windy Wednesday night in Commonwealth Stadium.

Pringle rushed 23 times for 149 yards and two touchdowns, giving him 67 career 100-yard games in his 12 years in the league. That surpassed the 66 by Reed in 13 years with Saskatchewan until his retirement in 1975. He was inducted into the Hall of Famei n 1979.

"It is always great to be mentioned in the same breath as Mr. Reed," said Pringle. "It was even sweeter to be able to do it at home in front of our crowd."

There were 33,785 on hand to witness the record accomplishment although thousands scurried for cover after the skies opened in the first quarter.

Ricky Ray threw four touchdown passes for the Eskimos, 3-2, who had been off for 10 days. Hamilton, 0-5, was playing its third game in 11 days. The discrepancy in rest time had to have something to do with the lopsided score, but nothing could diminish Pringle's achievement.

"We knew Mike was going to be able to do this," said Ray. "He's getting more comfortable and it's starting to show."

Pringle, 35, signed with Edmonton as a free agent this year, returning after seven years in Montreal to the club with which he began his CFL career.

A 31-yard Ray scoring toss to Ed Hervey, a 13-yarder to Troy Mills and a 14-yarder to Terry Vaughn helped stake Edmonton to a 30-8 halftime lead. There were 20 penalties for 173 yards in the first half.

"It felt like a long game, and we can't be taking penalties like that and expect to keep winning," warned Ray.

Ray completed 17 passes for 224 yards. He also ran 35 yards to set up a second scoring pass to Hervey from 10 yards in the third quarter.

"We took full advantage of things offensively, defensively and on special teams," said Hervey. "Mike had a great day, Rickey had a great day, and the receivers had a great day."

Bart Hendricks replaced Ray in the last quarter and ran 12 yards for a TD.

The game was barely a minute old when Edmonton put up its first points. Hamilton's Troy Davis fumbled on the first play from scrimmage and Pringle took two handoffs to the right and scored. He also knocked defensive back Troy Saunders out of the game with a thunderous rush to start the third quarter before scoring his second touchdown, from one yard out, later in the drive.

Edmonton defensive lineman Rahim Abdullah was ejected for kicking during a 23-yard Hamilton field goal attempt. Hamilton fullback Julian Radlein scored on a one-yard run three plays later.

Tiger-Cats quarterback Danny McManus, in his second game back from injury, completed six of 20 passes before being replaced by Pete Gonzalez in the fourth. Gonzalez promptly found Archie Amerson for a 20-yard TD.

"I didn't get our team into the right spot to make the plays that needed to be made," said McManus. "We're putting oursleves in bad spots."

Added coach Ron Lancaster: "This was bad. You can't give them any breaks, and we gave them four or five and they capitalized on them. We're finding ways to beat ourselves, and when you get down 30-8 at the half against a team like Edmonton, it's hard to come back."

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