East Union runs to win over Houlka

Blake Spruill of East Union races downfield after breaking into the Houlka secondary for a long gain. Spruill had a big night against the Wildcats as he rushed for 171 yards and 2 touchdowns for the Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton

Blake Spruill of East Union races downfield after breaking into the Houlka secondary for a long gain. Spruill had a big night against the Wildcats as he rushed for 171 yards and 2 touchdowns for the Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton


East Union runs to win over Houlka

By Dennis Clayton
East Union had several new faces in the lineup and in the backfield, but that didn’t prevent them from running over and around the visiting Houlka Wildcats on Friday night. Coach Scott Duley said “I thought our boys showed a lot of heart and it was the most disciplined that I have ever seen us for a first game. You can tell that the young men from East Union are getting better at playing football.”
The first half highlights belonged mostly to Blake Spruill and Jacob Elder as they both scored two touchdowns. Elder hauled in a 43-yard strike from quarterback D.J. Armstrong with 5:52 remaining in the first quarter to help the Urchins break on top. Spruill added the PAT and East Union led 7-0.
Spruill scored with 2:08 left in the opening quarter on a 33-yard run to put the Urchins up 13-0. the PAT was missed. Houlka then scored their lone touchdown of the night on a Wyatt Esterley to Tyreque Reed pass of 65 yards. The two point conversion failed and the score stood at 13-6 after one quarter of play. East Union scored two touchdowns in the second quarter on touchdown runs of 8 yards by Spruill and 21 yards by Elder. Armstrong added a two point conversion and Spruill added the PAT after the fourth touchdown of the game. The teams went to half with East Union leading 28-6.
Spruill had issues with leg cramps in the second half and gave way to Jamie McCullough, who promptly sped through defenders on a 34-yard TD run at 10:52 left in the third quarter. East Union recovered a Houlka fumble at the Wildcat 22 and after a couple of running plays by McCullough got East Union down to the seven yard line, Armstrong scored on a scamper around the right side of the offensive line for a 7-yd touchdown.
Spuill finished the night with 13 carries for 171 yards and two TD’s. Elder had one rushing TD on two carries for 57 yards and his TD reception of 43 yards. McCullough had 11 carries for 146 yards and a touchdown. Quarterback D.J. Armstrong was 5 of 7 passing for 75 yards and a touchdown. Armstrong also carried the ball five times for 50 yards and a touchdown.
East Union travels to Middleton, Tenn. for next week’s game. Middleton suffered a 59-29 loss to Falkner Friday.

East Union’s defense was solid all night in the Houlka game. Urchin defenders move in to recover a fumble in the first quarter of play. Photo by Dennis Clayton

East Union’s defense was solid all night in the Houlka game. Urchin defenders move in to recover a fumble in the first quarter of play. Photo by Dennis Clayton

About Dennis Clayton

I cover high school sports in Union County and occasionally contribute sports articles to sister community newspapers of Journal Inc. Follow me on Twitter: @denclayton for scores and updates on our local high school teams.