HAMILTON, Ont. -- Jeremiah Masoli threw three second-half touchdown passes as the Hamilton Tiger-Cats beat the Montreal Alouettes 28-23 in the CFL exhibition opener for both teams Saturday.
Masoli, entering his second CFL season, put Hamilton ahead 28-23 with a 16-yard TD pass to Sam Giguere at 9:21 of the fourth quarter at McMaster University's Ron Joyce Stadium. Montreal led 23-21 on Delbert Alvarado's 26-yard field goal at 2:27.
Masoli gave Hamilton a 21-20 advantage with two third-quarter TD strikes. He hit C.J. Gable on a six-yard pass at 6:32, then capped a 105-yard, six-play march with a 20-yard toss to Luke Tasker at 12:31. Alvarado's 43-yard field goal had put Montreal ahead 20-7.
Zach Collaros, Hamilton's top off-season acquisition, played the opening quarter and finished 5-of-8 passing for 52 yards and had a 13-yard run.
Tyrell Sutton and Kyle Graves had the Montreal touchdowns. Sean Whyte added the converts and a field goal while Alvarado booted two.
Dan LeFevour scored Hamilton's other touchdown. Brett Lauther had two converts while Justin Medlock added one.
Alex Brink's nine-yard TD strike to Graves at 13:38 of the second staked Montreal to a 17-7 half-time lead. Graves, the former Acadia quarterback trying to make the Alouettes as a receiver, scored after Whyte connected from 43 yards at 10:20 to break a 7-7 tie.
Sutton opened the scoring with a one-yard TD run at 9:33 of the first, set up by a pass interference call in the end zone on Hamilton's Brandon Stewart. Montreal took over at the Ticats' 25-yard line after Medlock was tackled recovering an errant third-down snap resulting in a 40-yard loss on the play.
LeFevour tied it with a one-yard TD run on third down on the final play of the first. It was set up by a pass interference call on Montreal's Michael Carter in the end zone after Hamilton's Eric Norwood forced and recovered a fumble on a punt return.
NOTES -- Former NFL star receiver Chad Johnson didn't dress for Montreal due to an ankle injury. Quarterback Troy Smith and linebackers Chip Cox -- CFL's top defensive player last year -- and Kyries Hebert also didn't suit up for the Alouettes . . . Hamilton finishes its exhibition schedule visiting the Toronto Argonauts on Thursday night at Varsity Stadium. Montreal hosts the expansion Ottawa Redblacks on Friday night . . . CFL teams must reduce their training camp rosters to 65 players by 11:59 ET on Sunday . . . Hamilton is scheduled to play its first game at the new Tim Hortons Field on July 26 hosting Ottawa.