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History is considerably messier and grubbier at ground level than it is in the eventual re-telling.

And so it will almost certainly be when it comes to Anthony Calvillo's milestone touchdown pass, number 395 of the Montreal Alouettes quarterback's stellar career.

In the Canadian Football League record book, the entry will simply read: eight-yard-pass to receiver Eric Deslauriers (his second career touchdown catch and first from Calvillo).

But the reality was far more textured than that.

With the ball resting on the Toronto Argonaut eight yard line 4:49 into the first quarter, Calvillo lined up in the shotgun with five receivers spread across the field, four of them on the left.

The play, which is called Quads Left 61 Double Stick Y-Post Z-Clear X-Lincoln, developed slowly, and Calvillo did what makes him so deadly: he waited.

Eventually, he settled on Deslauriers, a rangy, little-used Canadian receiver, who was streaking to the back of the end zone.

The six-foot-four Deslauriers, the primary receiver on the play, reached up with his hands and leapt, his left foot touching the turf exactly as the ball nestled in his hands.

Here's how Deslauriers described the moment the ball began sailing toward him: "Oh my God, the ball's actually coming. Catch that sh-t."

The annals will probably gloss over the fact that his right foot then landed eight or 10 inches out of bounds, or that the Argos challenged the call.

"I was definitely in-bounds, I did that on purpose so they could show me over and over," Deslauriers joked. "I just wanted to get my feet in, I was so happy to see the ball coming my way I just threw my hands up. I thought I was in-bounds completely until they replayed it five times."

Either way, the result stood after video review, the Als celebrated, and Calvillo kneeled on the sideline as the waves of applause washed over him.

"It was just my way of getting down and giving (God) his glory," he said.

The sweetest plaudits came a couple of hours later, when the final gun sounded at the Als had won 40-17 to run their record to 3-0 on the season.

"The fact we won tonight is the most important thing," the impeccably modest Calvillo said immediately after the game.

True. But the record will be remember far longer than a mistake-filled mid-summer encounter.

There were a dozen Calvillos in attendance, the quarterback's mother and younger brother among them.

They were nominally in town to celebrate six-year old Athena Calvillo's birthday, but as a side benefit they witnessed an event that gives one of the CFL's most-cherished records to Athena's daddy.

"In the long run, you're going to see your name etched up there, but the one thing I've learned is records are made to be broken," Calvillo said. "I'm going to absorb the moment . . . but I'm not done, I'm definitely not done."

It was quite a night for Calvillo, who passed for 307 yards despite being deprived of favourite targets Jamel Richardson and Kerry Watkins, both out injured.

In the second quarter, Calvillo came back after the Als' short-yardage offence stalled to zip a six-yard touchdown strike to Brian Bratton.

His stats line after two quarters: 21-for-26, 246 yards and two TDs.

The damage could have been more considerable had Calvillo's receivers hung on to some dropped balls, or if S.J. Green could have stayed on his feet after hauling in a pass in acres of open space late in the first half Or if Green had managed to hold on to a touchdown pass in the third quarter, although in fairness he had a Toronto defensive back draped all over him.

If the Argos had hoped to slow Calvillo with their fearsome pass rush, those aspirations were dashed by the Als' offensive line. That defensive tackle Kevin Huntley was scratched because of a late injury did no favours to Toronto coach Jim Barker's defensive game plan.

The Argos did score a touchdown - an eight-yard scamper by Cleo Lemon set up by an 89-yard Chad Owens kickoff return - and add a field goal to briefly lead 10-7 in the second quarter.

Though they made it a 23-17 game in the third frame when the Als secondary blew a coverage and left rookie running back Chad Kackert all by his lonesome down the right sideline.

Not even a quarterback with Lemon's evident limitations could miss that opportunity, which resulted in a 53-yard touchdown.

Lemon was on the run for most of the evening - the Als' John Bowman sacked him twice - and couldn't generate the sustained drives to keep Toronto's nose out front for good.

Bowman's second sack at the end of the third quarter forced a fumble, Montreal effectively salted the game away on the next series when Brandon Whitaker punched it in from two yards.

Toronto had the ball at the Montreal one with less than two minutes to play, but on second down Kackert fumbled and Chip Cox scooted 108 yards for the score, tying the CFL record for longest fumble return.

"We're not the kind of team that can do that, we have to be better at controlling the football," a fuming Barker said.

Rookie Brandon London stepped to the fore in Richardson's absence, catching six passes for 82 yards, but the real offensive sparkplug for the Alouettes this night was another Brandon, running back Whitaker.

The first-year starter caught 11 passes for 94 yards and churned out 120 yards on the ground - he has revealed himself to be a more than adequate replacement for the departed Avon Cobourne.

It was merely a happy coincidence that Calvillo's first of several signature moments this season - he should become the CFL's all-time passing yards and completions leader sometime this fall - came on the night celebrating receiver Ben Cahoon's career.

Cahoon, the league's all-time receptions leader, caught the bulk of his passes from Calvillo, the two were known to be fast friends.

The Utah resident - who is now the receivers' coach at Brigham Young University, his alma mater - paid tribute to Calvillo, calling his achievements "phenomenal."

Asked if he wished he could be on the field for Calvillo's moment, he said "just for one play, as long as it was two-hand touch instead of tackle."

Cahoon also made what sounded an awful lot like a backhanded compliment to his old partner in crime, saying Calvillo's career was "similar to myself, more consistent than great."

Cahoon, a long-standing fan favourite, earned a reception at least as warm as the one that greeted Calvillo when he sat on a dais at midfield with his wife and three daughters for a halftime ceremony.

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