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Canton outlasts BEE in top-ranked showdown, 24-17

CANTON -- In a game fitting of the top-ranked billing of undefeated foes, second-ranked Canton took advantage of its late chances to knock off No. 1-ranked Bridgewater-Emery/Ethan 24-17 in a Class 11B battle in Canton.

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CANTON - In a game fitting of the top-ranked billing of undefeated foes, second-ranked Canton took advantage of its late chances to knock off No. 1-ranked Bridgewater-Emery/Ethan 24-17 in a Class 11B battle in Canton.

The C-Hawks came from behind with a 16-play drive early in the fourth quarter to tie the game with a 2-yard touchdown run from Shaeden Scheidt to tie the game at 17-all. After stopping the Seahawks, Canton (6-0) turned around and marched 62 yards on six plays, capped by a 2-yard touchdown plunge from quarterback Scott Peterson, putting the C-Hawks up 24-17 with 6:17 remaining.

"They (Canton) made plays in that fourth quarter," BEE coach Jeff VanLeur. "We shot ourselves in the foot a couple of times and you can't do that against a good team. But you have to give them credit."

Canton's do-everything Kayden Verley started the game with fireworks, running the opening kickoff 83 yards for a touchdown and kicked the ensuing extra point for a 7-0 lead. BEE had a pair of drives into Canton territory early but ended the possessions with a fumble and a turnover on downs.

The second quarter saw the action pick up and the Seahawks tied the contest at 7 when quarterback Brady Hawkins hit Chase Arend on a 72-yard bomb. Canton answered by driving to the BEE 2-yard line and kicking a 19-yard field goal from Verley, giving the C-Hawks a 10-7 advantage.

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The Seahawks took their first lead of the game on a 26-yard touchdown connection from Hawkins to Sawyer Schultz with 1:34 remaining until halftime, only to see BEE strike again quickly.

After recovering a Canton fumble with 22 seconds left, Hawkins broke a 53-yard run down to the Canton 3-yard line. After the C-Hawks defense stiffened twice, Hawkins booted a 19-yard field goal and BEE went into halftime with a 17-10 lead.

The Seahawks had a great chance to add to the lead but a long drive to the Canton 7-yard line stalled, and Hawkins missed a 24-yard field goal.

A last chance for BEE late in the game resulted in a turnover on downs at the Canton 25-yard-line, ending the Seahawks' perfect start to the season. BEE will host McCook Central/Montrose on Friday.

"Our kids fought hard," VanLeur said. "I was proud our effort, but tonight was Canton's night."

BEE got the ball back with 6:10 left and drove to the C-Hawk 25-yard line. But a fourth down pass was incomplete and Canton ran out the clock.

Hawkins finished with 153 yards passing on 6-for-12 tries and two touchdowns, and ran 10 times for 93 yards. He found Schultz four times for 67 receiving yards. BEE also held the advantage in total yards 374-271, with 222 of that coming on the ground for the Seahawks.

For Canton, Verley had 82 rushing yards on 12 carries. Peterson threw for 72 yards and ran for 34 more yards on the ground. The C-Hawks travel to Class 11A Lennox on Friday.

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Scoring summary

First quarter

CAN: Kayden Verley 83 kickoff return (Verley kick)

Second quarter

BEE: Chase Arend 72 yard pass from Brady Hawkins (Hawkins kick)

CAN: Verley 19 field goal

BEE: Sawyer Schultz 26 pass from Hawkins (Hawkins kick)

BEE: Hawkins 19 field goal

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Fourth quarter

CAN: Shaeden Scheidt 2 run (Verley kick)

CAN: Scott Peterson 2 run (Verley kick)

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