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WINNIPEG — The two-time defending champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers continue to build momentum following a third straight win to start the season. And while all three phases made an impact in their 26-12 home victory over Hamilton in their rematch of the past two Grey Cups on Friday, it was the defence that once again made the ultimate difference.
Winnipeg’s offence made progress against the Tiger-Cats, with quarterback Zach Collaros notching his first 300-yard passing game since Week 9 of last season, but it was pass rusher Willie Jefferson‘s timely pick-six in the fourth quarter that dealt the fatal blow.
Jefferson’s touchdown, the fifth of his CFL career, made the crowd erupt at IG Field as Winnipeg claimed a 16-point lead with 8:40 remaining.
“I love getting in the end zone,” Jefferson said after the win. “I don’t get to touch the ball as much as I used to, so whenever I get an opportunity to get my hands on the ball and get in the end zone I’m going to take advantage of it.”
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The star defensive end also recorded his first sack of the season, while defensive back Nick Taylor helped seal the win with an interception following the three-minute warning.
Winnipeg’s defence has surrendered just one touchdown so far this season, and Jefferson said the team took another step in the second half against the Ticats by taking their playmakers completely out of the game.
“It was a good night, a good night at the office,” Jefferson said.
The Blue Bombers will look for their fourth straight win when they face the Argonauts at BMO Field in Toronto on Monday, July 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET.