CANTON — The defenses came to play in what turned out to be an old fashioned slobber knocker at Norris Birdwell Stadium in Canton on Friday.
Rusk (3-6, 3-0) rallied in the fourth quarter to clip Canton (2-7, 1-2), 12-7. With a win over Wills Point next week Rusk can sew up its second-consecutive 7-4A-II championship.
With Canton leading 7-0, Rusk finally got on the scoreboard inside of a minute to go in the third stanza. That's when quarterback Jaylon Hall scored on a 2-yard run.
The 2-point conversion try failed, resulting in Rusk cutting the Canton lead to 7-6.
The Red and Black scored what ended up being the winning touchdown with about 8:00 left in regulation when Hall dialed up Isiah Ward for a 28-yard touchdown. The conversion try was unsuccessful.
Rusk closed the game out with a strong defensive stop when JoJo McGowan tackled the Canton ball carrier for a loss on a 4th-and 7 from the Rusk 22-yard line that in the final minute of play.
After a scoreless first half, Canton got on the scoreboard first with about 9:00 left to play in the third frame by scoring on a 26-yard touchdown pass, which was followed up by a point after touchdown.