Reddies Top Wonder Boys in GAC Opener

Henderson State scored on the opening kickoff and never looked back in a 73-34 Great American Conference football victory over the Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys at Thone Stadium at Buerkle Field in Russellville on Saturday night.

Israel Valentin’s 92-yard kickoff return for a touchdown gave the Reddies the lead 11 seconds into the game, and they never surrendered the advantage.

Henderson State (3-0 overall, 1-0 GAC) built a 29-0 edge early in the second quarter, scored touchdowns on eight of its first nine possessions and led 56-27 at halftime.

HSU quarterback Kevin Rodgers, the reigning NCAA Division II national offensive player of the week, completed 21-of-32 passes for 381 yards and six touchdowns. His 17 touchdown passes through the first three weeks of the season are the most by any quarterback at any level of NCAA.

Dustin Holland made seven receptions for 121 yards and a touchdown and Elliot Hebert caught three passes for 105 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Reddie receiving corps. Henderson State’s Jarvis Smith rushed 18 times for 155 yards and a touchdown.

Tanner Marsh completed 32-of-52 passes for 325 yards and three touchdowns for Arkansas Tech. His favorite target was Cassius Washington, who had seven receptions for 125 yards and a touchdown.

Donnell Jones had a team-high 12 tackles for the Wonder Boys (1-2, 0-1).

The Wonder Boys will make their first road trip of the 2012 season when they visit the nationally 15th-ranked Ouachita Baptist Tigers (2-0) for a GAC contest on Saturday, Sept. 22. Kickoff at A.U. Williams Field in Arkadelphia is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Radio station KWKK 100.9 FM will have the play-by-play description. Listen to live or archived broadcasts.

Learn more about Arkansas Tech football.