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Undefeated Canton forces six turnovers, runs over Windsor Locks

Brock Steinfeldt (44), Dan Delos (34), Cam Daley (3) and Caiden Permenter (59) gang up on Windsor Locks' Khamri Thomas in Saturday's 37-13 Pequot Uncas victory.

Brock Steinfeldt (44), Dan Delos (34), Cam Daley (3) and Caiden Permenter (59) gang up on Windsor Locks’ Khamri Thomas in Saturday’s 37-13 Pequot Uncas victory.

WINDSOR LOCKS, Oct. 11 – The Canton High football team gave up a 77-yard touchdown run to Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby on the second play of the game. The Warriors didn’t allow much more than that. 

Undefeated Canton won its fifth straight game Saturday afternoon as Dan Delos ran for four touchdowns and a career-high 209 yards in a 37-13 win over the host Raiders. The Warriors forced six Windsor Locks turnovers as Cam Daley intercepted two passes and Canton recovered three fumbles. After the Raiders took a six-point lead in the second quarter, Canton outscored the Raiders, 30-0 and forced five turnovers. 

“Hats off to (Canton) coach (Paul Philippon). They played great,” Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby coach Jason Qua said. “They’re big up front. They have the biggest front line in the Pequot. They owned the line of scrimmage and that is how you win football games.” 

Canton (5-0) leads the Pequot Uncas Division with Avon, Ellington/Somers and Gilbert/Northwestern in second place with 4-1 records. It’s Canton’s best start since winning its first five contests in 1952. 

Along with Delos, Daley ran for 123 yards on 18 carries and Sebby Gumbs dashed for 77 yards on seven carries. The Warriors attempted only three passes and ran for 438 yards. Canton’s offensive line of Shane Toland (left tackle), Caiden Permenter (left guard), Will Carlson (center), Keegan Toland (right guard) and Pearce Walsh (right tackle) had another strong game. 

“That’s how it is supposed to be,” Philippon said. “It’s the guys up front that create an opening or they don’t. Our backs appreciate them. The guys up front played some good football.” 

Canton's Dan Delos runs through a hole in Saturday's win over Windsor Locks.

Canton’s Dan Delos runs through a hole in Saturday’s win over Windsor Locks.

Defensively, the Warriors limited Windsor Locks’ dynamic backfield duo of Jarvis Miller and Khamri Thomas. Miller ran for 243 yards and four TDs a week earlier in a win over Gilbert/Northwestern and had 185 yards against Enfield two weeks ago. Thomas had 162 yards and three TDs in a win over Enfield. 

Miller escaped on the second play of the game for a 77-yard touchdown run and a 7-0 Raiders lead. But he gained just 61 yards in the remainder of the game. Thomas ran for 44 yards. 

“They have some dangerous players,” Philippon said. “We spent a lot of time on defensive schemes this week. You have to play very disciplined football. They are patient and wait for creases.” 

Trailing by seven, Canton took the ball on its opening drive and marched 80 yards on nine plays with Delos scoring from the 19-yard line. Eddie Melton’s extra point tied the game at 7-7. The Raiders took a 13-7 lead with 3:39 remaining in the second quarter, marching 67 yards on eight plays and Miller scoring from the two yard line. The extra point try was foiled by a bad snap. 

Windsor Locks' Jarvis Miller pulls in a pass despite defensive pressure from Eddie Melton and Cam Daley (3)

Windsor Locks’ Jarvis Miller pulls in a pass despite defensive pressure from Eddie Melton and Cam Daley (3)

Daley intercepted his first pass of the game with 54 seconds left in the half. One play later, Daley took the snap from center and found Gumbs behind the defense for a 60-yard touchdown pass with 47 seconds remaining. Melton’s extra point gave Canton a 14-13 lead at halftime. 

Canton scored on its opening drive of the second half to extend its lead to 22-13. Delos had a nice 24-yard run to start the drive. He finished it with a seven-yard run into the end zone. Daley scored on a two-point conversion run. 

Turnovers ended Windsor Locks’ next three drives. Delos recovered a fumble, Melton stripped the ball from a runner and recovered it and Daley made his second interception. 

“We spent a lot of time on (creating turnovers) in practice,” Philippon said. “We just try to make sure we’re doing it at the right time and not just flying to the ball and missing tackles. It’s a mindset.” 

After Melton recovered the ball, Canton scored in three plays with Delos scoring from the four-yard line. His two-point conversion run swelled the lead to 30-13 with 8:43 remaining in the game. 

NOTES: Delos became the fourth player in school history to score 26 points in a single game. The most recent was Kyle Mullins in 2012. … Melton recovered two fumbles in the game. … Delos is believed to be the second Canton runner to rush for more than 200 yards in a game. The school record is 217 yards by Mullins in 2012. Individual records from Canton games from 1934 to 1964 aren’t available. … Next week, Canton hosts Morgan (4-1) in a non-divisional contest at 1:30 p.m. at the high school. Morgan plays in the Pequot Sassacus Division. … The record for most interceptions in a single game is four by Tyler Plourd against Stafford/East Windsor in 2008. … With the win, Canton is the No. 1 ranked team in the CIAC’s Class S playoff rankings. The top eight teams will earn a berth in the state playoffs. The Warriors picked up bonus points because the Windsor Locks co-op team is a Class L squad.

Canton 37, Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby 13
At Windsor Locks
Canton (5-0)                     7  7  8  15 — 37
WL/Suffield/EG (3-2)        7  6  0  0  –13
First quarter
W: Jarvis Miller 77 run (Brennan Colli kick), 10:53
C: Dan Delos 19 run (Eddie Melton kick), 6:10
Second quarter
W: Miller 2 run (run fails), 3:39
C: Sebby Gumbs 60 pass from Cam Daley (Melton kick), 0:34
Third quarter
C: Delos 7 run (Daley run), 7:21
Fourth quarter
C: Delos 4 run (Delos run), 8:43
C: Delos 8 run (Melton kick), 0:55
Individual statistics
RUSHING: Canton – Dan Delos 19-209, Cam Daley 18-123, Sebby Gumbs 7-77, Henry Bonini 4-31, Alex Higley 2-minus 2; WL – Khamri Thomas 10-44, Jarvis Miller 12-138, Brennan Colli 1-2, Jeremy Wilson 7-58
PASSING: Canton – Daley 1-1-0, 60; Higley 0-2-0; WL – Colli 3-6-3, 44
RECEIVING: Canton – Gumbs 1-60; WL – Thomas 1-9, Miller 1-23, Sam Cutler 1-12
RETURNS: Kickoffs – Thomas (W) 1-17, Miller (W) 1-10, Jake Lareau (W) 1-5, Matt Bangs (C) 1-1, Daley (C) 1-21; Punts – Daley (C) 1-0, Colli (W) 1-3
INTERCEPTIONS: Daley (C) 2-2, Gumbs (C); FUMBLE RECOVERY: Miller (W), Bruce D’Agata (W), Melton (C) 2, Delos (C); SACKS: Nick Smith (W) 1-1

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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