The 1955-56 basketball season
first & only year in the history of the
KHSAA that there were three first team
all-state members from the same high
school in the same year.
And they did not come from the
winning state championship team.
Henderson City's Byron Pinson, David Eakins
& Pascal Benson are also the only players in KHSAA
history to be named to all-district, all-regional,
and all-state teams in the same year
from the same high school.
That year was 1956.
This has never occurred before the 1955-56
season and has not happened since in the state of
To quote retired Henderson Gleaner-Journal Editor Ron Jenkins: 1955 through 1959 were Henderson City High
School's "GLORY DAYS".
And they had their "Glory Days"
like no Henderson team before or after this remarkable school year of 1955-56. Very few high schools in the our great
country could even come close to that unforgetable 1955-56 year for these Henderson City High School student/athletes. Not
just one team went to the Kentucky state tournaments, all 4 major sports went and performed well. Without a doubt, this
is one of the finest years in high school sports history for this extremely talented Henderson City High School. To
top that off, Henderson also produced one of the greatest high school athletes in Kentucky high school history,
Football: 1st place, KHSAA State Champions
Basketball: 2nd place, KHSAA State Runner-Up
Baseball: 3rd place, KHSAA Consolation Game winner
Track & Field: 4th place in
KHSAA Track Meet Finals.
Henderson City's 5' 6"
Bill Ruff is KHSAA Track & Field pole vault champion in back to back state meets in 1956 & 1957.
Pascal Benson named 1st team all-state in basketball, football
and baseball, a feat that has not been matched, before or after the 1956 season in the state of Kentucky or any other state.
Springsteen's #1 hit "Glory Days", these Henderson players don't brag about what they accomplished. The Henderson City
High alumni & fans own the bragging rights.
Football: 1959 KHSAA State Champions
The ICON of "Henderson"
This photograph of the 1955-1956 basketball
team was placed on the wall
in the lobby behind the Concession
stand in the main lobby at the Henderson City High
School Gym for 20 years, from
1956 to 1976. The photograph was taken by
& donated to the Henderson City High
boosters club by the Martin Studio of
Henderson in 1956.
I remember seeing this photo from the
time it was placed on the wall
at every home game & during
lunch breaks when I was
a freshman & sophomore at City High. After
Henderson City High was shut down
for good on that final school day
in May 1976, this photograph that had
become a Henderson City "ICON",
(if not a City of Henderson ICON)
was relocated at the new
"consolidated" Henderson County Senior
High School on outer 2nd St.
(aka Zion Rd,) in Henderson, KY in
September 1976, where it is
A sad note to follow, Martin Studio of Henderson
closed their doors after 64 years, 1947-2011.
Henderson City High Flash Facts:
1. Henderson City
High football team goes undefeated in 1955.
2. Henderson City
High crowned as the mythical Kentucky
state football champions for the 1955 football season.
Undefeated Prestonburg, also with a perfect
10-0 record, ended the season with a #2 ranking
by the Litkenhaus rating system.
laid claim to crown as the mythical Kentucky
state football champions for the 1955 football season.
City High's track team places 4th in
Kentucky State Track meet in 1956.
4. Henderson City
High's Pascal Benson becomes first Kentucky schoolboy player in history
to be named to first team all-state in 3 different sports, all in the
Henderson's Pascal Benson was named to 3 all-state teams in the same year is possibly the only
player (there probably are a few in other states) in U. S. High Schools to achieve this feat. After researching the internet
for 3 years, looking for some other high school players that may have accomplished this, and I found no other players
that have also been named to 3 all-state squads in the same year. Pascal also holds the distinction of throwing a rare perfect
game in his junior year for the 1955 Barret Manual High baseball team.
5. Henderson Barret
Manual Training High School
finishes 3rd place
in State basketball tournament in 1955.
6. Henderson City
High finishes as runner-up in KY State
basketball tournament in 1956, ranked #1 in
final poll of year by the *Litkenhaus ratings.
7. Henderson City
High finishes with undefeated regular season in 1956 baseball.
8. Henderson City
High Flash finishes 3rd in state baseball tournament in 1956.
9. Nine Henderson City High & *Barret athletes
were named to Thirty one all-state teams from
1953 through 1957, in 4 different sports.
Pascal Benson, 54, football, '55 football, '56 basketball,
'55,baseball, '56 baseball,
Bill Brown, '55 football,
Bryant, 56 football, '57 football, '57 track,
David Eakins, 56 basketball, '56 basketball,
'55, baseball, '56 baseball.
*Don Gish, '54 basketball,
Junie Hall, '57 basketball
'55, basketball, '56 basketball,
Ronnie Sheffer, '54 football, 55 football,
'54 football, '55 football.
Bill Ruff, Track & field, 1956, Track & field, 1957
10. Henderson City High
School is the first
High School in Kentucky history
to place 3 all-state players
in the same year, and not win the
state basketball tournament. To date, (2010), no other
high school has accomplished that feat in Kentucky.
Henderson City High
baseball in regular season in 1959.
12. Henderson City
High football team finishes Undefeated in 1959.
13. Henderson City
High places four all-state
football players in 1959, Tommy Glover, Jim Biggs, John Wheeler and Delbert
14. Henderson City
the 1959 Kentucky State football
champions after defeating
previously unbeaten & the top ranked Ft. Thomas Highlands
15. The Henderson
City High basketball
squad finishes regualr season
29-3 for best basketball record
local history for all Henderson Schools in basketball.
16. Henderson City High's 1955 undefeated (10-0) football team is the second team in local high school
history to finish a sports season with an unscathed season.
17. The undefeated 1959 Henderson City High Flash football
team becomes the third sports team from Henderson to go undefeated. the 1959 Flash football state champions (KHSAA) finished
the season with an unblemished 12-0 mark.
18. The Henderson City High School Flash repeated with another undefeated
season again in 1959 as they finished flawless, with a 12-0 season.This was concluding the KHSAA state championship
with a victory over the previously undefeated and the top ranked Ft. Thomas Highlands High School.
19. Tommy Glover
is named 1st team high School All-American as a fullback. Tommy is also named the National High School player of the
year for 1959. Glover was named to the 1st team high School All-American squad as a junior in 1958. Glover is also the
only football player in Kentucky High School history to play on 2 state championship and 2 teams undefeated football teams, doing
this in a 5 year span. He accomplished this as a reserve eight-grader and as a starting senior.
The school year of 1955-56 is the only
year that a Henderson City team defeated the Owensboro Senior High Red Devils in all 4 major sports consisting of football,
baseball, basketball & track/field. This year's football victory was a rare road win at Owensboro's
Henderson City: 45 Owensboro
21. Coach Don Shelton becomes
the first coach in Kentucky high school football history to coach 2 undefeated teams. He accomplihed this in 1955 and
repeated it again in 1959.
22. Henderson City High's Tommy
Glover was named the 1959 KHSAA player of the year & the National High School football player of the year . Tommy attended
the University of Alabama, under the guidance of the legendry Paul "Bear" Bryant. Through the calendar year of 2009, Tommy
is still the only athlete in Henderson history to be named to a high school All-American team in any sport.
1916 Barret basketball team finished 12-0 and were the unofficial first Kentucky state basketball champions and went
to become the National High School champs by defeating Parkersburg, West Virginia.
24. David Eakins named to the
all-regional basketball team as a freshman.
25. The 1954-1955 Barret High School Purple
Flash is only one of two boys High School team in Kentucky High School history to ever achieve a 100 point victory margin.
Oddly enough, both 100 point margin games were in the 1954-1955 season.
The 4th ranked Purple Flash defeated the Uniontown
St. Agnes Knights in 10th district tournament play, 118-18 on Feb. 21, 1955 at the Henderson Holy Name High School
gymnasium. The Barret Purple Flash were led by three 2 time all-state performers, Center Don Gish, Forward Byron Pinson,
with super sophomore guard (future 2 time all-state performer) Dave Eakins, forward (future all-state performer) Pascal
Benson, and all-Region guard Billy Brown. Coach T. L. Plain pulled all five starters out of the game early in the
2nd quarter. Leading scorer for the Henderson Barret Purple Flash was 5'6"
sophomore reserve guard Bill Ruff, who burned the nets for 38 points in 22 minutes of playing time. Barret center
Don Gish was all-state in the 1953-54 season and repeated again in the 1954-55 season. Byron Pinson, Dave Eakins & Pascal
Benson were all-state performers in the 1955-56 season with Dave Eakins repeating again in the 1956-57 season. To say
the Uniontown St. Agnes Knights were outclassed is an understatement.
This is the same St. Agnes squad that allowed Wayne Oakley of Hanson High School
to score an all-time Kentucky High School state record of 114 points.
All three of these records set in that 1954-55
season still stand today.
*Litkenhaus ratings are the first computer
high school rating service in the United
was a feature used exclusively in the
Louisville Courier-Journal Newspaper sports section. Dr. E. E. Litkenhaus' mathematical
system first appeared in the 1953 season.
The following is taken from the 1955-56 City High yearbook, "The Revue".
Henderson City High's basketball team set quite a record this season by winning 29 games and only losing 3. The Flash were
defeated twice during season play, by the #1 team in the state, Berea, and by a well balanced Earlington club. Before being
defeated the team had won 13 straight games. They also swept through the tournament the #2 team in the state of Kentucky.
Henderson High was the first team to place 3 men on the all-state team without being the state champions. Seniors; Pascal
Benson, Byron Pinson, and junior David Eakins made All-District, All-Regional and All-State
This web-site is dedicated to the Barret
Henderson City High Sports teams from
Especially the Henderson City High 1955-56 sports
that had so many great gifted student/athletes.
SAR2 CREATIONS of NEVADA
©, TM, ®,
2008, 2009, 2010
The contents of this web site are intended to be used
only for the educational value and entertainment enjoyment.
An alumni of Henderson City High School stated to me:
"Once a Flashman, always a Flashman".
Truer words have never been spoken.
Many thanks to the people listed below for their contributions.
Adams (HHS '59),
Elaine Benson (HNHS: '59),
Pascal Benson (HHS '56)
Don Gish (BMTHS '55),
Glenda Alexander Guess (HHS '57),
Shirley Hagan (HHS '56),
Billy Haynes (HHS '59),
Keach Nolan (HHS '56),
Dr. Fred Schuette (HHS '56),
Sammy Joe Shelton (HHS '56),
Bud Bayard Walters (HHS '59),
Coach T. L. Plain
all artwork/photos are the property
of SAR2 CREATIONS of Nevada,
©, TM, ®, 2007, 2008, 2009. 2010,
Please contact webmaster for any use of artwork or photographs.
All photographs used are public-domain,
there are no violations of copyright laws
or Hippa Laws of Privacy.
Shelby A. (Lex) Riggs II
Please note that all photographs were sent in by former
students of Henderson City High School. They have all been edited, corrected & cleaned up as well as they
possibly could. If you are displeased with a photo, simply scan the photo that you want replaced and I will be more than happy
to replace it.
Thanks for your support,
Lex Riggs, webmaster