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Canton gets back on the winning track with big win over Enfield

Canton High football coaches Sal Cintorino, left, and Paul Philippon discuss strategy with the Warriors during a time out in Friday's win over Enfield.

Canton High football coaches Sal Cintorino, left, and Paul Philippon discuss strategy with the Warriors during a time out in Friday’s win over Enfield.

CANTON, Oct. 24 – There was something missing Friday night when the Canton High football team hosted Enfield for a game under the lights. A crispness was missing and there were several uncharacteristic errors by the Warriors. 

But in the end, the Warriors walked off the field as the victors with a dominating 42-7 Pequot Uncas victory over Enfield. The visiting Raiders turned the ball over on three of their first four possessions in the third quarter as a seven-point Canton halftime lead quickly expanded. 

Canton (6-1, 6-0 Pequot Uncas) scored three touchdowns in a stretch of two minutes and six seconds to secure the victory. 

Cam Daley scored three touchdowns and ran for a game- and career-high 184 yards on 14 carries. Dan Delos ran for 149 yards and a touchdown on nine carries. The Warriors didn’t attempt a pass in the game. 

“Folks say they don’t have depth because they don’t have a lot of players. But they do have depth. They have kids who can come in and play and play hard,” Enfield coach Jay Gaucher said. “They play physical.” 

Canton's Sebby Gumbs ran for 34 yards on seven carries and forced a fumble that led to another Canton touchdown.

Canton’s Sebby Gumbs ran for 34 yards on seven carries and forced a fumble that led to another Canton touchdown.

It was a 7-7 ballgame late in the second quarter when Enfield quarterback Joey Roberts threw the first of his two interceptions to Canton’s Henry Bonini with 3:53 remaining. Canton quickly marched 76 yards on five plays with Daley running for 54 yards on the drive, including a three-yard touchdown run with a minute left in the first half for a 14-7 halftime lead for Canton. 

It took Canton just two plays to score on its opening drive of the third quarter. Delos ran for 18 yards and then Daley slipped through a nice hole created by his offensive linemen and ran away with a 61-yard touchdown run and a 21-7 lead. 

Then, the turnovers began. Canton’s Ethan Burke intercepted a pass to stop an Enfield drive. 

Late in the third quarter, Canton was pinned on its own seven-yard line after fine Raider punt from Tyrik Henry. The Warriors picked up runs of 18 and 19 yards from Bonini and then Delos ripped off a 54-yard run, getting knocked out at the Enfield two-yard line. Canton QB Alex Higley scored his first touchdown of the season from the two for a 28-7 advantage. 

On Enfield’s next drive, Gumbs stripped the ball from Enfield’s Andrew Cain and it flew into the air to Canton’s Brock Steinfeldt, who caught it and rambled 37 yards to the Enfield four-yard line. Daley scored from the four for a 35-7 lead. 

When the Raiders got the ball back, Cain ran up the middle into Canton’s Shane Toland and the ball popped free allowing Matt Bangs to leap on it. Two plays later, Delos scored from the one-yard line for a 42-7 lead. 

“I like the heart we played with and I like the fact we played like a team,” Canton coach Paul Philippon said. 

But he was concerned with a lost fumble in the third quarter, two bad snaps that resulted in losses of 32 yards in the second quarter and some other mistakes. “We still have a lot of work to do,” he said. 

Dan Delos ran for 149 yards and a touchdown on nine carries in Friday night's win over Enfield.

Dan Delos ran for 149 yards and a touchdown on nine carries in Friday night’s win over Enfield.

Still, it was a welcome victory after a tough 31-7 loss to Morgan a week earlier. 

“We got it handed to use pretty good last week and a lot of that credit goes to Morgan,” he said. “Some of it was self inflicted. We tried to make everyone own their mistakes. We spent a lot of time on film going through some painful lessons and we wanted to take what we learned in the film room and whiteboard and put it into play on the practice field. We had a good week (of practice) and we worked hard.” 

It will only get tougher in the final four weeks of the regular season with four games against teams with winning records. 

The Warriors travel to Gilbert/Northwestern (4-2, 4-1 Uncas) next weekend in the final road game of the regular season and face an athletic Hyde-New Haven team (3-3) on November 8. A week later, they’ll play their final game against Avon (5-2, 5-1 Uncas) at home in a contest that could be pivotal in who wins the Pequot Uncas Division title. Canton closes out the regular season by hosting Granby (5-2, 4-2 Uncas) and their outstanding running back Connor Field on Thanksgiving morning. 

NOTES: Philippon was back on the sideline after serving a one-game suspension for unsportsmanlike conduct. Two weeks ago at the Windsor Locks game, he was thrown out of the game with about 30 seconds remaining after accidentally bumping into a referee while walking along the sideline. Philippon was speaking to a player and bumped into the referee, drawing a flag. Because the Canton bench was been penalized earlier in the game for coaches getting in the way of referees on the sideline, a second flag meant that Philippon had to be ejected.  … The 35-point win was the largest by Canton over the Raiders in the six-game series that began in 2009. … It was Canton’s third straight win over Enfield. … Canton placekicker Eddie Melton was 6-for-6 kicking extra points. … In the Pequot Uncas race, Canton leads with a 6-0 record followed by Avon (5-1). Ellington/Somers and Gilbert/Northwestern are each 4-1 and they play against each other on Saturday.

Canton 42, Enfield 7
At Canton
Enfield (1-6)       0  7  0  0  — 7
Canton (6-1)       7  7  21  7  — 42
First quarter
C: Sebby Gumbs 10 run (Eddie Melton kick), 8:26
E: Tyrik Henry 19 pass from Joey Roberts (Nick Joren kick), 0:39
Second quarter
C: Cam Daley 5 run (Melton kick), 1:00
Third quarter
C: Daley 61 run (Melton kick), 8:37
C: Alex Higley 2 run (Melton kick), 1:20
C: Daley 4 run (Melton kick), 0:12
Fourth quarter
C: Dan Delos 1 run (Melton kick), 11:14
Individual statistics
RUSHING: Canton – Cam Daley 14-184, Dan Delos 9-149, Sam Jenkins 6-40, Alex Higley 1-2, Henry Bonini 5-64, Sebby Gumbs 7-34, team 2-minus 32; Enfield – Joey Roberts 6-minus 7, Andrew Cain 5-4, Carlos Hernandez 3-3, Tyrik Henry 1-minus 2, Nick Serignese 1-0
PASSING: Canton – none; Enfield – Joey Roberts 12-26-2, 149
RECEIVING: Enfield – Tyrik Henry 2-30, Nick Serignese 2-19, Nick Joren 3-36, Jermaine Rivers 2-45
RETURNS: Kickoffs – Gumbs (C) 1-20, Daley (C) 1-13, Henry (E) 3-69, Cain (E) 1-10
INTERCEPTIONS: Bonini (C) 1-5, Ethan Burke (C) 1-0; FUMBLE RECOVERY: Brock Steinfeldt (C) 1-37, Matt Bangs (C) 1-0, Chemzek Kluk (E) 1-0

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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