MONTREAL - Quarterback Chad Kelly threw three touchdowns and ran for another as the Toronto Argonauts remain undefeated with a 35-27 win over the Montreal Alouettes on Friday night.
Toronto, the CFL's only team without a loss, starts the season 4-0 for the first time since 1983, the same year the Argos won the Grey Cup.
Kelly, who completed 21 passes on 25 attempts for 351 yards and threw one interception, found Canadian David Ungerer III for his second touchdown catch with just under two minutes left to lift Toronto to victory in front of 16,151 spectators on the road at Molson Stadium.
Running back A.J. Ouellette rushed for 95 yards on 14 carries, and DaVaris Daniels had a game-high 91 receiving yards.
Montreal (2-3) lost for a third-straight game to fall below .500 for the first time this season.
Quarterback Cody Fajardo was 26 for 36 for 274 passing yards. He threw three touchdown passes and two interceptions.
Rookie Tyler Snead had all three touchdown catches for Montreal in his second game. Receiver Austin Mack added to his league lead in receiving yards with 70 on seven receptions.
Running back William Stanback, more involved after six carries last week, had 53 yards on 12 carries.
Montreal kicker David Cote went 2-for-2 and Toronto's Boris Bede both went 2-for-3 on field goals.
The Argonauts came into the game well-rested after a bye week, while the Alouettes faced a short turnaround after playing Sunday in Vancouver against the B.C. Lions.
Kelly opened the scoring with a one-yard run after completing three passes in a 75-yard drive. Kelly had left the game momentarily after taking a hit and falling on his shoulder, but returned to give Toronto an early 7-0 lead.
Other than a couple offensive penalties, the Argos had little trouble getting down the field early with Kelly going seven for seven on his first pass attempts.
On his eighth throw, Kelly threw a poor pass while under pressure from an Alouettes blitz that was picked off by safety Marc-Antoine Dequoy.
The interception and an ensuing unnecessary roughness penalty against the Argos led to the Alouettes' first score of the game - a 47-yard kick from Cote.
The Alouettes scored their first touchdown of the game with three seconds remaining in the half. Fajardo found Snead in the end zone with a 17-yard pass - giving Montreal a 10-7 lead.
The Argonauts started the half with a bang after Kelly threw 42 yards to Kurleigh Gittens Jr. Alouettes cornerback Kabion Ento created a fumble after the catch, but officials ruled Gittens was down before the turnover, leading to a game-tying Toronto field goal.
Montreal re-took a three-point lead, but Toronto quickly moved downfield again as Ouellette rushed for a 42-yard gain.
Kelly then threw a 15-yard pass to Ungerer, who kept his feet just inside the end zone for a touchdown with 4:57 left in the third quarter, making it 17-13.
With the score 20-13 Toronto early in the fourth, Fajardo completed seven passes on one drive, including another touchdown connection with Snead after fighting off two defenders - this time for five yards - to tie the game.
Both teams traded touchdowns in the final five minutes. Kelly connected with Damonte Coxie and Fajardo found Snead for a third time.
Kelly answered by finding Ungerer in the end zone and the Alouettes got the ball as far as the Argos 32-yard line late, but couldn't even the core.
Alouettes defensive back Ciante Evans was supposed to return after missing the last two games with a leg injury, but Montreal made a last-minute change to the roster and replaced him with Kordell Rodgers.
Toronto stays on the road and faces the Hamilton Tiger-Cats at Tim Hortons Field next Friday. Montreal has its second bye week of the season before hosting the Calgary Stampeders on July 30.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 14, 2023.