Photo: Troy Mitchell/ HSU Sports Information)
ARKADELPHIA, Ark. (HSU) - Henderson State scored 38 unanswered points to beat Southwestern Oklahoma 45-17, Saturday at Carpenter-Haygood Stadium in Arkadelphia, Ark.
Playing in front of a Homecoming crowd of 6,045, the 8th-ranked Reddies totaled 457 yards of offense while the defense limited the Bulldogs to 328 yards.
After Southwestern Oklahoma took a 10-7 lead with 14:12 left in the first half, Kevin Rodgers hit Darius Davis for a 72-yard touchdown 45 seconds later to give the Reddies a 14-10 lead to begin the run. It was Henderson's longest touchdown pass of the season.
The Reddies, 6-0 overall and 5-0 in the Great American Conference, added to their lead on their next possession as Keaton Stigger broke free on a 4th-and-1 and scampered 17 yards for his team-leading ninth rushing touchdown of the year.
Charles Gonsalves added to the lead with a 34-yard field goal as time expired in the first half to make the score 24-10 at the break.
Robert Jordan, who had a 38-yard touchdown reception in the first-quarter, caught his second touchdown pass when Rodgers hit him with a 26-yard strike to increase the Reddie lead to 31-10 with 6:51 left in the third quarter.
Early in the fourth-quarter, Zann Jones hauled in his first collegiate touchdown reception from 14 yards out, while Kevin Nichols ended the scoring for Henderson with a 10-yard run.
Rodgers ended the game completing 29-of-40 passes for 378 yards and four touchdowns. The Rockwall, Texas product has now thrown for 70 career touchdowns in 24 games.
Also breaking into the record books was Jordan who became Henderson's all-time leader in yards receiving as he caught six passes for 93 yards to give him 2026 career yards. The Miami, Fla. product passed Garett Manning who totaled 1948 yards from 2005-08.
Davis ended the night with four receptions for 95 yards, while Jones had a career-game with four receptions for 80 yards.
The Reddie defense received great performances from Stigger, Tim Llewellyn and Ricardo Mendez.
Stigger, playing with a heavy heart after the passing of his grandfather earlier this week, compiled 19 tackles, 2 tackles for lost yardage and two pass breakups.
Llewellyn had 11 tackles and a pass interception, while Mendez collected 9 stops and had a forced fumble.
Henderson State will next travel to El Dorado, Ark. on Saturday, Oct. 19 to face Arkansas Tech in the Boomtown Classic with kickoff slated for 3 p.m.