If Bowling Green football coach Kevin Wallace was looking for something to pump up his Purples before they took on host Lexington Catholic in the Republic Bank Bluegrass Bowl Friday night, he found it on twitter.
"Streak ends here!!!!!!!"
That tweet came early Friday courtesy of Lexington Catholic athletics director Brad Carter, who predicted the Knights would halt Bowling Green's four-year 45-game winning streak.
It didn't happen.
The three-time defending Class 5A champ Purples dominated Lexington Catholic 40-14 in a game that wasn't over until almost midnight.
"I'd like to thank their AD. He got everybody's attention with his tweet," Wallace said. "It created a buzz in our locker room I hadn't felt so far this year. And our players had a look in their eyes I hadn't seen before."
Bowling Green didn't look like the same team that was inept against Manual in a scrimmage two weeks ago, and that was spotty at best in a victory over Mercer County last week.
With a rebuilt lineup after graduating an ultra-talented senior class, the Purples beat Lexington Catholic for the fourth year in a row, and notched their 46th consecutive victory overall, the third longest winning streak in state history.
Trinity set the record with 50 straight victories from 1988-91. Boyle County had a 47-game winning streak from 1999-2002. Bowling Green will go for No. 47 next week at home against St. Xavier.
"We didn't look anything like a football team two weeks ago," Wallace said. "And because of that we haven't been very nice (to the players). So I'm tickled to death for this to happen. But we have to build on this. We can't let this be the shining moment of our season."
Ben Holt was the Purples' standout on defense. The 5-11, 220-pound senior linebacker, who had six sacks against Mercer County, lived in Lexington Catholic's backfield. He finished with seven tackles and two sacks.
"He's got a real motor, and he's so friggin' strong," Wallace said.
Bowling Green's offense, which had been stagnant the previous two weeks, was versatile and efficient.
Jacob Yates, who ran the ball only 15 times last year as a sophomore, carried 22 times for 119 yards and two scores. Senior quarterback Campbell Gott, a backup last season, completed 14 of 22 passes for 152 yards and three TDs.
Cameron Wallace, a 6-7, 210-pound senior tight end, had six catches for 66 yards. The coach's son came into this season with 10 career catches for 137 yards and two TDs.
Lexington Catholic senior quarterback Reese Ryan completed 19 of 34 passes for 200 yards, and was picked off twice. Jordan Hatton had six catches for 69 yards.
Ryan scored both of the Knights' TDs on short scrambles. Jaylen Jones ran 22 times for 181 yards.
Chase Boling led the defense with 9.5 tackles.
Coach Mark Perry said his team was its own worst enemy, with three turnovers and 10 penalties for 115 yards.
"We made a lot of self-inflicted errors," he said. "I've got to do a better job getting us in better condition and get us not to make those penalties that were drive-killers.
"It's no fun losing by any means, but when you get hit in the gut, you find out a lot about yourselves. We'll learn from this."
Bowling Green 40, Lex. Catholic 14
Bowling Green 7 6 13 14—40
Lexington Catholic 7 0 0 7—14
BG—Cameron Wallace 9 pass from Campbell Gott (Lee Ramsey kick). LC—Reese Ryan 4 run (Donovan Morris kick). BG—Wallace 12 pass from Gott (Ramsey kick). BG—Wallace 17 pass from Gott (pass failed). BG—Jacob Yates 75 run (Ramsey kick). LC—Ryan 5 run (Morris kick). BG—Yates 3 run (Ramsey kick). BG—Jamale Carothers 21 run (Ramsey kick).
Records: Bowling Green 2-0; Lex. Catholic 1-1