By COURTLIN HAYGARTH | HSU Sports Network
Henderson State will hit the road for the final time this season on Thursday, Nov. 3 against the University of Arkansas-Monticello to conclude the 2022 season. The Reddies will take the court against the Blossoms at 6 p.m.
Henderson State (9-18, 3-12)
Henderson took down the Muleriders of Southern Arkansas in four sets on senior night. The Reddies opened the match with two set wins, but SAU would get one back before HSU would go on to win the fourth frame, winning the match 3-1.
Before the match, the Reddies recognized Kaityln Sykes on her final match in the Duke Wells Center on senior night. The middle blocker would score eight kills and tally five blocks against the Muleriders. Sykes now has 121 kills and 80 total blocks for the season.
Aleah Stogner continues to hit the ball with venom, finishing her third consecutive match with double-digit kills. The freshman tallied 13 kills and had a season-high 18 digs, recording her fourth double-double. Stogner now has 193 total kills, second most on the team, while Christiane Uzoh leads the team with 272 after recording 13 kills against SAU.
Dani Dagley has had three matches in a row with 20 or more digs. The libero had 22 digs versus Southern Arkansas, bringing her total to 366 for the season. Before the SAU match, the redshirt senior had 20 and 25 digs, respectively, against Arkansas Tech and Harding. Dagley is ninth on the GAC digs leaderboard, averaging 3.70 a set.
In the previous meeting this season between the two sides, the Blossoms would get the upper hand on the Reddies, defeating them 3-0. Since 2017, Henderson is 4-1 when facing UAM in the Steelman Fieldhouse, including a 3-2 victory in 2021.
The Blossoms enter the match against the Reddies on a four-match losing streak after falling to Harding University 3-0 in its last match. Arkansas-Monticello is 4-11 in conference play with a 10-18 overall record.
UAM is led by Jasmine Welton, who leads the team with 234 kills. Rounding out the Blossom attack, Holiday Ellis and Riley Krenek have 218 and 186 kills, respectively. Against Harding, Ellis had a team-high ten kills, while Krenek led the Blossoms’ defense with seven total blocks.
Mia Smalls had 28 assists in the match against the Lady Bison and led the team with 591. The sophomore is averaging 7.39 assists a set and only 15 set errors. As a team, the Blossoms are scoring 11.5 kills a frame with an attack average of .152.
What to Watch For…
- With the victory over Southern Arkansas, head coach Phil McDaniel is now one win away from reaching 100 wins with Henderson State. McDaniel, in six seasons with HSU, is 99-65.
- The Reddies have not lost back-to-back matches against the Blossoms since 2015. Arkansas-Monticello defeated Henderson 3-0 in the first meeting and 3-1 in the second match that year. Since 2016, HSU has only suffered three defeats while recording ten wins over UAM.