By COURTLIN HAYGARTH | HSU Sports Network
ARKADELPHIA — Henderson State put up a season-high 606 total yards, including a season-high 338 rushing yards, as the Reddies routed Oklahoma Baptist Saturday afternoon from Carpenter-Haygood Stadium at GeoSurfaces Field, 51-24.
Korien Burrell eclipsed 100 rushing yards for the third consecutive game, running for 122 yards and two touchdowns. Burrell has seven scores in the last three games as he now has 14 touchdowns on the year, tied for fourth all-time in a single season at Henderson. The Reddies logged five trips to the endzone on the ground against the Bison.
Quarterback Andrew Edwards played a near perfect game, completing 17-of-20 passes for 268 yards and two touchdowns, along with 70 rushing yards and a score. Xavier Malone contributed his sixth 100+ receiving outing towards Edwards’ effort, catching seven passes for 189 yards and a score. The senior wide out now has 1244 receiving yards on the year, good enough for fifth in program history with still one game remaining.
Defensively, HSU gave up the fewest total yards to an opponent this season with 268, totaling one interception and three sacks in the suffocating display, including giving up just 29 total yards in the first quarter. Defensive back Cameron Thomas led the effort with nine tackles, followed by Jakob Neel with seven. Gary Lewis recorded one sack for nine yards and one quarterback hurry.
Defensive Coordinator Greg Holsworth‘s defense got going early, sacking Bison quarterback Seth Streeter on the first play of the game before defensive back Andrew Croker tallied his second interception of the season on Oklahoma Baptist’s third play from scrimmage. Three minutes and 37 seconds of game time later, Edwards took a quarterback keeper 15 yards around the right edge for the first score of the game, 7-0.
An OKBU punt on their next drive gave way to HSU’s next scoring drive as Tristan Heaton drilled a 20-yard field goal to put the Reddies ahead by two scores, 10-0. A field goal on the other end for the Bison got the contest back to single digits before HSU flexed its offensive muscle, going on an 11-play, 97 yard drive, chewing up over six minutes of clock before a Burrell 26-yard scamper put the home team up 14.
After the Bison were forced into a three-and-out, HSU added to its advantage again with a Jeremiah Davis one-yard plunge into the endzone to give Henderson the 24-3 lead with 1:57 remaining in the opening half. A touchdown just before the intermission brought the score to 24-10 after a dominant opening half that HSU outgain OKBU in total yardage, 296 to 116.
The second half reflected the first with the Reddies coming out fast as a 33-yard kickoff return from Jody Easter sparked an 8-play, 55-yard drive that ended in a Matt Childers 16-yard touchdown grab, making the score 31-10. The Bison responded this time with a touchdown of their own, cutting the deficit to 14, before Xavier Malone took a short end-around pass from Edwards 64 yards to pay dirt on the ensuing drive to keep HSU out of reach.
Three more punts from Oklahoma Baptist and two more trips to the endzone, including a 36-yard house call from backup quarterback Landon Ledbetter, put the finishing touches on a dominant showing from head coach Scott Maxfield‘s squad. A late garbage-time touchdown from OKBU gave Henderson the 51-24 victory.
Henderson St. (8-2) will return to Carpenter-Haygood Stadium one final time this season when the Ouachita Baptist Tigers walk across the street that divides for the 95th Battle of the Ravine. Kickoff for the closest rivalry in all of sports is set for Saturday, Nov. 12 at 2 p.m.