The Canton Warriors defeated Old Forge 20-14 in overtime. The Warriors forced a turnover in overtime’s first possession, and Hayden Ward scored on the next possession the game-winning touchdown. The Canton Warriors overcame a two-point deficit in the fourth quarter and advanced to the state semifinals next Wednesday. But first, the Warriors must get by the Old Forge defense. They haven’t won a state game since 2007.
The Canton Board of Education voted unanimously in November to remove the Native American imagery from the school’s mascot. The school will have to change its name, but it will retain the mascot’s nickname. The Board also directed the school to seek student input to rebrand the Canton Warriors. The new mascot will likely be in place by May 2022. The controversy over the new mascot isn’t over yet, but the process will continue.
After exchanging possessions, the Warriors got a first down at the 42-yard line. The Warriors had to hustle to get the first down. Sayre was penalized for illegal substitution on the first down. The Warriors were then faced with a fourth down. The Warriors’ final possession ended with a quick gain and a successful field goal. Canton was still behind at the half’s end, however, 24-8
The Warriors trailed by two touchdowns at the half, but they nearly took a three score lead twice. The Warriors’ defense stopped Old Forge twice and forced five turnovers. Canton also forced two blocked punts during the fourth quarter. A two-point fourth-quarter touchdown tied the game. The Warriors won the first-place trophy in both the girls and boys track and cross competitions after the game.
The Canton Warriors reached the state semifinals after a 3-0 start to their season. The Warriors won five of their five league games and seven of the team’s 10 wins. The team then clinched a district title, but was defeated in the title game by Muncy in the Class 1A District championship. Although two-time All-State Tight End Ben Knapp graduated, the Warriors return their quarterback, Cooper Kitchen, who threw for 339 yards and nine touchdowns.