Edmonton scored quickly in the first quarter when running back Roy Bell found a big hole in the left side for a 38 yard touchdown run. Rick Cassata, the Riders' backup quarterback who was replacing injured Jerry Keeling responded with a 38-yard touchdown pass-and-run to Rhome Nixon. Late in the quarter, however, Tom Wilkinson was knocked out of bounds by Ottawa's Wayne Smith and suffered a rib injury. He was replaced by backup Bruce Lemmerman. Lemmerman took the Eskimos close enough for Dave Cutler to kick a field goal, giving them a 10-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
A low snap to Edmonton punter Garry Lefebvre caused him to bobble the ball in the end zone, and he was tackled for a safety by Ottawa's Wayne Tosh at 21 seconds of the second quarter. Gerry Organ kicked a 46-yard field goal in the last minute of the half. The half-time score was 12-10 for Ottawa.
Ottawa increased its lead with an 18 yard touchdown run by Jim Evenson at 9:45 of the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Lemmerman suffered an arm injury, and Wilkinson, his rib injury frozen, came off the bench to bring some life to the Eskimo offence. Edmonton receiver Tyrone Walls fumbled after receiving a Wilkinson pass on Edmonton's 47. Wayne Tosh recovered and Organ kicked another Ottawa field goal from the 39.
Edmonton then scored a single and Lefebvre, who played both ways as well as being the punter, caught a Wilkinson touchdown pass with seven seconds left, but it was not enough to erase Ottawa's 12 point lead.