VANCOUVER - Joe Burnett's two interceptions led the Edmonton Eskimos to a 27-14 victory over the B.C. Lions in CFL action on Friday night.
Burnett returned his second pick-off 108 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter to secure the victory.
Edmonton improved to 3-1, moving into a share of first place in the West Division with Saskatchewan. The Lions fell to 2-2 as they suffered their second straight loss.
Burnett's first interception, in the second quarter, resulted in one of Grant Shaw's four field goals.
Hugh Charles produced Edmonton's only offensive touchdown while punter Burke Dales rounded out the scoring with a 41-yard punt single in the final minute.
Marco Iannuzzi and Andrew Harris produced touchdowns for the Lions in a game that was uneventful until the latter stages.
Edmonton starting quarterback Stephen Jyles completed 10 of 16 passes for 150 yards, while backup Kerry Joseph made good on four of six for 60. The Lions' Travis Lulay had a better night, completing 28 of 38 for 360 yards, but was hurt by Burnett's two interceptions.
Charles put the Eskimos ahead 13-7 on a five-yard run 3:44 into the third quarter. But the Lions quickly responded with a nine-play, 91-yard scoring drive. After taking a hand-off from backup quarterback Mike Reilly, who was in for a short-yardage situation, Harris meandered into the end zone from two yards out.
Kicker Paul McCallum's convert gave the Lions a 14-13 advantage.
The Eskimos threatened to reach the house again late in the third quarter after Jyles connected with former Lion Dobson Collins on a 39-yard pass and Charles ran six yards to put Edmonton at the B.C. seven-yard-line. But Jyles was called for a time-count violation and the Eskimos had to settle for a 15-yard Shaw field goal, which gave them a 16-14 lead.
Edmonton came close to another touchdown again early in the fourth quarter after backup quarterback Kerry Joseph threw 23 yards to Charles to get the ball to the 13-yard-line again. But Fred Stamps dropped Joseph's pass in the end and then Khreem Smith sacked Joseph on the next play.
As a result, Edmonton settled for a 27-yard Shaw field goal to go up 19-14. Then the Lions threatened to score after Lulay threw for 29 yards to Harris and 20 yards to Arland Bruce on back-to-back plays to reach the Edmonton five-yard-line.
But on the next play, Burnett recorded his second interception of the night on a pass intended for Geroy Simon. Simon was hit hard while attempting to catch the ball, losing his helmet and the ball, which bounced to Burnett.
The 25-year-old caught it on the run and never looked back as he ran into the end zone untouched.
Iannuzzi put the Lions on the scoreboard first as he caught a five-yard touchdown pass from Lulay nine minutes into the game.
Harris played a key role in the scoring drive as he romped up the sidelines for 28 yards en route to 65 rushing yards on the night and another 120 on receptions.
The Lions were also aided by a 15-yard facemasking penalty by Edmonton defensive lineman Lee Robinson after Lulay scampered for 11 yards.
But the Eskimos held the Lions scoreless for the rest of the first quarter. Burnett's first interception set up a 15-yard Shaw field goal just 28 seconds into the second quarter. Shaw booted another three-pointer about nine minutes later, this time from 22 yards, to leave the Eskimos trailing 7-6 at half-time.
Notes_The Lions inducted former defensive lineman Brent Johnson into their ring of honour at half-time. Johnson, who retired in the spring following 11 standout seasons became the quickest inductee in the franchise's 58-year history. He retired as B.C.'s all-time sack leader with 89. ... Due to wet weather, the B.C. Place Stadium roof was closed after the Lions announced earlier in the week that it would be open. ...