Roughriders thump Eskimos 39-18 in regular season opener

Kory Sheets sets new career high in rushing yards
Reported by Joel Gasson
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The Saskatchewan Roughriders started fast and never looked back as they crushed the Eskimos 39-18 in Edmonton. 

The Riders opened the game with the ball, and drove it 74 yards for the touchdown, including some 50 yards in combined offence from Kory Sheets alone. That drive would foreshadow what would end up being a career game for Sheets with 131 yards rushing, he added . 

Sheets would end the game with a new career high in rushing yards with 135. His previous best was 113 against the Toronto Argonauts last year. 

It didn't take long for the Riders to strike again, as on their next possession Darian Durant would orchestrate a 93 yard touchdown drive that would end with a Taj Smith touchdown to make it 14-0 for the Green and White. 

The game would settle down from there, as both teams would add a single point to make it 15-1. 

Just before half-time, the game would change for good. Inexplicably the Eskimos decided to pass on 2nd down from the shadows of their own goal line. Mike Reilly's pass would be picked off by linebacker Rey Williams who took it to the house to make it 22-1 Riders at the half. 

The Riders jumped on Edmonton quickly to start the 2nd half as well. As the offence took to the field for the second time, Durant would find Weston Dressler for the first time connecting on a 38 yard pass. A few plays later Durant would connect with Chris Getzlaf for his first touchdown of the game, making it 29-1 Riders

On the following kick-off, Levi Steinhauer would knock the ball loose, and Sam Hurl would jump on it, giving the Riders the ball deep in Eskimos territory.  A couple of plays after that Durant would find Scott McHenry on the goal line for the touchdown, giving the Riders a 36-1 lead.

The game then calmed down for a bit again, until Dwight Anderson was called for objectionable conduct after he appeared to give a throat slashing type gesture to the Eskimos sideline. Anderson would then lose his cool and be called for objectionable conduct again, moving Edmonton over midfield but nothing else came of it. 

The teams would trade field goals, and the Eskimos would get one safety to make it 39-6. Reilly would find Stamps in the end zone late, to make it 39-12. Edmonton would add two more field goals bringing the score to 39-18.

Durant finished the day 14-for-22 with 171 yards passing and three touchdowns, Getzlaf was the top receiver with three catches for 67 yards. Sheets finished the game with 131 yards rushing.

Tyron Brackenridge led the team with six tackles, Keith Shologan had two sacks, Ferri, Williams and Brown all had an interception. Macho Harris also appeared to have one, but the play wasn't challenged.

The Riders now head back to Regina where they will start to get ready for the Calgary Stampeders who also won their opener over the B.C. Lions. That game is Friday night at Mosaic Stadium.