Thursday’s victory over Arkansas Tech gave Henderson State its sixth victory in a row to secure a spot in the 2023 GAC Tournament.
Henderson put on a shooting clinic on Senior Night against the Wonder Boys en route to its 20-point victory, hitting 51.8 percent (29-56) of its field-goal attempts, 60.9 percent (14-23) from three, and connecting on all nine free-throws. Now, HSU will look to secure the league’s six seed with a win over Harding on Saturday, February 25 at 7:30 p.m. Franck Kamgain and Zyon Patterson led the efficiency drive, shooting 66.7 percent (14-21) from the floor and 77.8 percent (7-9) from three-point range to score 36 of the Reddies’ 81 points.
Against ATU, Alvin Miles recorded the initial 11-help game for HSU since Jan. 7, 2021. Miles has been a great front man for the Reddie offense and defense recently. He has scored at least five goals in seven of the last eight games and at least five assists in all but one of those games. The native of Memphis, Tennessee, is averaging 16 points, 6.3 assists, 4.7 rebounds, and 2.8 steals per game over his last six outings.
Henderson and Oklahoma Baptist are tied for sixth place with one game left before the GAC Tournament. Since HSU and OKBU split the head-to-head series this season, the Reddies hold the quality-of-win tiebreaker. As a result, Henderson, seed three, will face either Southern Arkansas or Southeastern Oklahoma State in the first round if the Reddies win against Harding or lose to the Bison against East Central.
Henderson has defeated Harding six times in a row, most recently beating the Bisons 87-66 in Arkadelphia earlier this year thanks to 12 three-pointers made by HSU. The Reddies have prevailed in both of their previous outings at Rhodes-Reaves Fieldhouse, with the Reddies’ most recent defeat coming on HU’s own turf on January 14, 2021. Harding was next, and he won that day by hitting 12 triples.
Harding won 69-57 on the road against Arkansas-Monticello on Thursday, making it the first time since the 2020-21 season that the Bisons have won consecutive conference games. The black and gold have won three of their last four games, two of which they have won at home, beating Arkansas Tech by 24 points.
Big man Taylor Currie is the nation’s fourth-leading scorer for the Bisons. He is averaging a league-high 24.1 points per game and a team-high 9.8 rebounds per game. This season, Currie has scored double digits in 26 of HU’s 27 games, including six games with a 30-point total. Keyln McBride contributes 10.5 points per game to the 6’11” center.
In addition to Saturday being Harding’s Senior Night, head coach and athletic director Jeff Morgan will step down as head men’s basketball coach after 30 years and a record of 449-391. Morgan will be retiring from his position. In his eight years as head coach of HSU, Jimmy Elgas has an 11-6 record against Morgan.