CANTON, Dec. 9 — The Canton High boys basketball took a step backward a year ago. After six straight winning seasons, the Warriors slipped under .500. Canton still qualified for the CIAC Class S tournament for a school-record seventh straight time but it was a short-lived appearance. Coach Eric Deegan hopes the Warriors (8-13, 5-11 NCCC) can get back on the winning side of the ledger but it won’t be easy.
“We don’t have the big inside guy that other teams do but I hope we’ll be able to rebound better and defend a bit,” Deegan said. Canton (8-13, 5-11 NCCC) has plenty of shooters. They weren’t afraid to put up three-point shots a year ago, sinking 116 from long range, one of the best performances in the school’s 90 years of basketball.
Junior Pat Sullivan led the way with 43 three-point shots, including seven in a win over Bolton when the Warriors sank 14 three-pointers as a team. Sullivan averaged 7.3 points a game. Leading scorer Michael Pepin, who sank 32 three-point shots and averaged 13.7 points a game, graduated along with Chad Huff, who averaged 8.7 points and a team-high 6.5 rebounds a game.
But 6-foot-2 senior forward Colin Gurry, who averaged 10.4 points a game, drained 21 three-point shots and had 25 steals, returns along with 5-foot-11 senior guard Tim Gavin, who played only two games a year ago before getting injured in game three. “We need Colin and Tim to be the leaders of this team,” Deegan said. “As a team, we need to be assertive and not be satisfied with eight wins. We’re expecting a lot from them.”
Five-foot-9 senior guard Zach Powell, 6-1 junior Tyler Lange and 5-8 junior forward Jake Wood look to contribute initially for the Warriors along with sophomore guards Alexander Daley (5-6) and Andrew Zukowski (5-5).