Union City held the Tri-Eastern Conference’s leading rusher to 19 yards last week. How well the Indians’ defense fares Friday against the Mid-Indiana Football Conference’s top running back will help determine who advances to the sectional semifinal.
Class A No. 4 Eastern Hancock (9-0) will host Union City (5-4) Friday in the Sectional 45 quarterfinals. UC is coming off a tough 17-14 loss to Northeastern (7-2) — another Sectional 45 squad slotted on the opposite side of the bracket.
Union City, located in Randolph County roughly 30 miles east of Muncie, had a 14-0 fourth-quarter lead on Northeastern last week in a Tri-Eastern Conference battle to close the regular season. The Indians limited Northeastern back Kelsy Kirkland to 19 yards, well below the season average for the junior, who has 1,278 yards on the year. But Northeastern closed the game with 17 straight points to finish 6-1 in the conference and clinch a share of the Tri-Eastern title with Winchester.
Eastern Hancock coach Pat Echeverria isn’t surprised the Indians were competitive Friday.