Jason Maas returned to the Green and Gold lineup on Thursday night and concerns over his off season shoulder surgery recovery were put to a quick rest. Maas took charge of the Eskimo offence as he passed 9 of 11 times successfully for 120 yards including a 22 yard TD pass to Trevor Gaylord, for a final exhibition of readiness Maas ran the ball himself four times for fourteen yards giving his reconstructed shoulder a solid workout. Maas began the scoring for the Eskies but it was Khari Jones who received the bulk of the work Thursday at his old stomping grounds of CanadInn stadium.
Jones took over with seven minutes to go in the second quarter and went 11 for 15, tossing for 151 yards giving up one interception and feeling the heat from a Bomber defence that put him on the turf five times, including a safety.
The former Bomber pivot played through until late in the fourth quarter when he turned the ball over to Jason Johnson, leaving the game with a 20-9 lead. Johnson took the Esks down to the four yard line before coach Maccocia settled for a Sean Fleming field goal to finish off the scoring for the night and securing the 23-9 victory for the Eskies.
Troy Westwood accounted for the bulk of the Bomber scoring, nailing two field goals while the safety and a single wrapped up the scoring for the Blue in their final pre season game.
Kevin Glenn started the night at QB for the Blue, tossing 12 passes, 6 of them successfully for 90 yards. One of his unsuccessful passes ended up as an interception for Donny Brady who took advantage of a stumble by receiver Wane McGarrity, Brady's pick turned into a turnover quickly capitalized on by Jason Maas.
Tee Martin and Spurgeon Wynn took turns to finish off the night at QB for the Blue, as they battle it out for the back up spot behind Glenn in Winnipeg.
The Bombers now prepare for the regular season opener on Saturday night June 25th at Taylor Field in Regina, a game featured on TSN. The Eskimos will await the arrival of the Ottawa Renegades who kick off the 2005 season at Commonwealth Stadium on June 24th, the debut of Friday Night Football on TSN for another year.