Reddies use big second half to pull away from Lyon


ARKADELPHIA — For the second straight game, Henderson State hit at least 10 three-pointers while the Reddies used a 45-point second half to defeat the Lyon College Scots inside the Duke Wells Center Monday, 82-50. Henderson has now hit 22-of-49 (44.9%) threes over its last 80 minutes of game action.

The athleticism and size of HSU wreaked havoc on the Scots all afternoon, forcing 25 turnovers from the fellow-Arkansas institution. Josh Mason paced all scorers in the 2023 opener with a season-high 15 points on 6-of-8 shooting, including going 3-for-5 from deep. Malik Riddle recorded his second double-double of the season, going for 13 points and 10 rebounds.

Junior transfer Che Smith assisted Mason with the majority of the bench contribution with Smith filling up the stat sheet to the tune of nine points, four assists, three steals, two rebounds and one block. 33 of Henderson’s 82 points came off the bench as all but one Reddie scored Monday.

Similar to how the Harding game started, Lyon took an early lead with two free throws minutes into the action. From there, Henderson went on a 9-0 run before the first media whistle blew. Though it looked like HSU was going to pull away, the Scots remained within striking distance, scoring seven of the contest’s next nine points.

With the Reddies holding a 16-14 advantage at the second media break, head coach Jimmy Elgas‘ squad found its first big run of the opening 20 minutes. Three-pointers courtesy of Riddle and Smith, mixed with a Mason lay-up, allowed Henderson to open up a 10-point lead with 9:29 remaining, 24-14. Moments later, an 11-0 run gave HSU its biggest lead of the game up to that point, 37-18, before heading into the break up 15, 37-22.

Leading-scorer Franck Kamgain got in on the three-point action within seconds of the second 20-minute stint, foreshadowing things to come as HSU built a 20-point lead before Lyon head coach Rodney Mayes was forced to call his first timeout of the second half. Yet another triple, this time from Ken Lewis, put the Reddies ahead by another 10 points at the 12:34 mark, 60-30.

With the outcome no longer in harms way, both squads traded baskets over the final 12 minutes. Henderson’s lead ballooned once more with 34 marking the largest lead of the game before closing out the Scots for good, 82-50.

Henderson St. (6-4, 3-1) will return to conference play when it makes its first road trip to the Sooner State for a rematch of the 2020 GAC Championship Game against the Oklahoma Baptist Bison Thursday, Jan. 5 at 7:30 p.m. The Reddies will remain in the Oklahoma City metro before heading to Bethany to face Southern Nazarene Saturday, Jan. 7 at 3 p.m.

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