The Gleason Bulldogs piled up 340 rushing yards on the way to handing the Halls Tigers a 34-19 defeat in non-district action Friday night in Halls.
Gleason only had one 100-yard rusher, but three other Bulldogs tallied at least 44 rushing yards.
Junior David Spellings was the big producer on the ground, amassing 150 yards on 17 carries. Two of those runs resulted in touchdowns for Gleason. Dalton Teeter added 89 yards and a score on 15 carries. Fullback James Owen rushed for 57 yards on 11 carries, while quarterback Conner Verdell compiled 44 yards on only four carries. Verdell’s rushes included a one-yard touchdown run.
The junior quarterback also threw for a TD, connecting with senior Nick Poore for the score.
On its second possession of the game, the Gleason offense reached paydirt. Starting at their own 40, the Dawgs alternated runs by Spellings and Teeter and overcame a 10-yard penalty along the way. Spellings finished the job with a 33-yard romp to the end zone. A week after struggling with converting points after touchdowns resulted in a 20-18 loss to West Carroll, the Dawgs lined Verdell up for the PAT kick. The junior split the uprights to extend Gleason’s lead to 7-0 with 4:39 to play in the opening quarter.
With the lead, the Bulldog defense was revved up against the young Halls offense. Gleason forced a quick three-and-out series and sent its offense back onto the field after a short 18-yard punt by the Tigers.
The Dawgs went to work with excellent field positions, starting at the Tiger 31-yard line. Two seven-yard runs — one each by Spellings and Owen — were followed by a four-yard gain by Teeter, however Teeter’s next two carries resulted in a total of six yards lost. On fourth down from the HHS 19, Verdell found his favorite target of the night — Poore — for a 19-yard touchdown strike. Verdell again kicked the PAT to lift the Gleason lead to 14-0 with 11:55 left to play in the first half.
Halls answered on its next drive, marching 61 yards in nine plays, eight of them runs. The Gleason defense held twice inside the four, but Tevin Giles eventually surged over the goal line for a three-yard touchdown run. The Tigers failed to convert the PAT, leaving Gleason in front, 14-6, with 8:37 left in the half.
The Dawgs had a quick response, using seven plays to cover 65 yards. Spellings notched his second long TD run of the night, this one covering 26 yards. Verdell was true on the PAT kick for a 21-6 lead with 5:08 left in the second frame.
Verdell came up with a sack on his HHS counterpart — QB Zach Harris — to help bring a quick end to the next Tiger drive.
After a Halls punt, Verdell helped the Dawgs add to their lead on the next possession. He connected once with Poore for seven yards, added a 16 yard carry and capped the drive with a one-yard TD run. Verdell missed the extra-point kick, but the Dawgs held a 27-6 lead heading into halftime.
The Tigers struck back to open the third quarter, covering 57 yards in 10 plays. Harris completed three passes, including an eight-yarder to TJ Reed for the touchdown with 8:15 on the clock. With the PAT, Halls cut the gap to 27-13.
Gleason again responded with a score. Teeter finished the nine-play, 63-yard drive with a nine-yard run. The kick missed, leaving the Gleason lead at 33-13.
Harris closed out scoring with a 20-yard TD run with 1:23 to play in the third in Gleason’s 33-19 win.
Gleason (2-1, 0-1 District 13-A) will try to pick up its first district victory when it takes the field on Friday night. The Dawgs will make the short trip across the county line to take on the McKenzie Rebels (3-1, 1-0 District 13-A). Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
Gleason 7 20 6 0 — 33
Halls 0 6 13 0 — 19
GHS — David Spellings 33-yard run, (Conner Verdell kick), 4:39.
GHS — Nick Poore 19-yard pass from Verdell, (Verdell kick), 11:55.
HHS — Tevin Giles 3-yard run, (kick failed), 8:37.
GHS — Spellings 26-yard run, (Verdell kick), 5:08.
GHS — Verdell 1-yard run, (kick failed), 0:22.
HHS — TJ Reed 8-yard pass from Zach Harris, (Luke Wilson kick), 8:15.
GHS — Dalton Teeter 9-yard run, (kick failed), 3:48.
HHS — Harris 20-yard run, (kick failed), 1:23
First Downs 22 14
Rushes-yards 47-340 25-145
Passing yards 49 110
Comp-Att-Int 5-7-0 16-25-0
Punts 2-36.5 3-30
Fumbles-Lost 2-1 1-0
Penalties-yards 6-45 3-15
Rushing — Gleason, David Spellings 17-150, Dalton Teeter 15-89, James Owen 11-57, Conner Verdell 4-44; Halls, Tevin Giles 7-75, Zach Harris 15-55, Emmit Henning 2-12, KJ Broadnax 1-3.
Passing — Gleason, Verdell 5-7-0 — 49; Halls, Harris 16-25-0 — 110
Receiving — Gleason, Nick Poore 5-49; Halls, Henning 4-48, Giles 6-30, TJ Reed 2-24, Cole Nichols 1-4, Luke Wilson 1-3, Charlie Walton 1-1, Colton Dew 1-0.
Records — Gleason 2-1 (0-1 District 13-A), Halls 1-2 (0-0 District 14-A).
Next Game — Gleason will visit McKenzie with kickoff at 7:30 on Friday night, while Halls will host Lake County with a start time of 7 p.m. on Friday.