HSU Women’s Season Ends in Bartlesville

Cortez Akins, Oracle Sports Editor

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Henderson State’s run in the GAC Tournament was short-lived, largely in part to a third-quarter where Harding University turned a tied game at halftime into an 11-point deficit for the Reddies headed to the fourth.

After their final game of the season, head coach Jill Thomas spoke on how important it was to play solid defense against the fourth-seeded Bison. She also knows that her team is a high-volume shooting team from deep, and that was something they would rely on come tournament time.

The shooting and defense early on was decent all-around, shooting 50 percent (4-8) from downtown in the first two quarters. HSU also held Harding to shooting 33.3 percent from the field in the first half.

But all good things must come to an end. The Bisons found their rhythm in the third, and Henderson’s shooting dismantled in the second half, going 4-for-13. That third quarter was enough to propel the Bison to a 63-54 win in the first round of the GAC Tournament at Bruin Fieldhouse.

A downside to shooting lots of threes is the absence of strong, hard takes to the basket that are likely to lead to foul calls. That was the case today, as Henderson’s only two free throw attempts came in the first half. Harding had 13 chances and made nine.

Sophomore forward Karrington Whaley had one of the best games of her career, leading HSU with 16 points on 8-of-9 shooting. She also swatted away four shots, and picked up eight rebounds along the way.

Leading all scorers from Friday afternoons matchup was Harding’s Carissa Caples. She played all 40 minutes and poured in 22 points.

Henderson finishes the season at 18-11 (13-9) and will now head into the offseason looking to regroup and improve.