TVCC mourns loss of two football players/Two die in head-on crash

Posted by : admin | On : October 12, 2017

Bryce Cook (left) and Tyler Spillman

Bryce Cook (left) and Tyler Spillman

By Bodey Cooper
The News Staff Writer
ATHENS–The Trinity Valley Community College football team is mourning the deaths of two Cardinal players who were killed in a head-on crash Monday morning.
Freshmen Tyler Spillman and Bruce Cook were heading back to Athens early Monday morning when they collided head-on with an 18-wheeler.
According to the Department of Public Safety, the wreck happened on FM 488 around 3:45 a.m. north of the Fairfield area. They had been in the Houston area and left around midnight. They both had a team meeting at 9 a.m. Monday morning, followed by practice at 10:45 a.m., according to their coach, Brad Smiley. Players were allowed to go home that weekend since they had an open date on the schedule, he added.
Spillman and Cook were traveling northbound on FM 488 in Freestone County, approximately one-and-a-half miles north of FM 416, when their vehicle crossed the center median and into the path of a southbound 18-wheeler tanker truck which burst into flames upon being struck head-on, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
The driver of the 18-wheeler was taken to Navarro County Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.
Spillman and Cook were pronounced dead at the scene.
For the year, Spillman had five tackles and 1.5 sacks as a defensive lineman. Cook had five tackles, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one pass broken up.
Both young men were from Spring. Spillman graduated from Klein Collins High School and Cook graduated from Westfield High School.
TVCC released a statement on their Facebook page remembering both players and what they meant to the team as well as the campus.
“We are saddened by the news that Cardinal football players Bryce Cook and Tyler Spillman have passed away. Their leadership on our football team and overall presence on our campus will be sorely missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with Bryce’s and Tyler’s families, friends and teammates during this difficult time.”