Maybe somebody should market an energy drink called "Embarrassment."
Boyle County Coach Steve Adams thought that's what fueled the Rebels' stunning comeback in their 60-59 upset of Lexington Catholic in the 98th Whitaker Bank/KHSAA Sweet Sixteen on Thursday afternoon.
Jeremiah Bell drove the lane and flipped in what proved to be the winning layup with :04 left.
Lexington Catholic's Michael Talbott missed a running 18-footer at the buzzer.
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Boyle County's fans celebrated the school's first-ever victory in the state tournament by filling Rupp Arena with loud Rebel yells.
Bell proved to be prophetic. He said he told the team before the game that "anything can happen in March."
Boyle County, which lost to Lexington Catholic 65-47 in late December, looked as if it was on its way to its fourth first-round Sweet Sixteen exit. It looked tentative and uninspired through most of the first three quarters.
Rebels senior Hagen Tyler said they "had no energy" and were "just standing around."
Adams thought his players might've been overwhelmed on the big stage.
"That wasn't our team we saw out there in the first half and part of the second half," he said. "We knew that wasn't us. If we were going to lose, we were going down fighting and playing."
Boyle County trailed 55-44 with five minutes left before it really started fighting and playing. Sparked by Bell and Tyler, they blitzed Lexington Catholic 14-2 to take a 58-57 lead on Bell's two free throws with 1:45 left.
What lit the fuse under the Rebels?
"We were tired of being embarrassed, as much as anything," Adams said.
Lexington Catholic regained the lead at 59-58 on Donovan Morris' jumper in the lane with 1:20 left.
When Boyle County's Keagen Hinkle missed two free throws at :34, the Knights regained possession. But not for long. A turnover gave the ball back to Bell at :28.
After a timeout, Bell killed the clock before driving the lane for the game-winner.
"I have total faith in my brothers, Hagen and Chapman" Bean, Bell said. "But at the end, I felt it was my shot. I saw a lane to the basket and took advantage of it."
Adams said the play has worked well for the Rebels. "We call it our give-and-go. We say give it to Hagen or Jeremiah, and everybody else go somewhere else."
Bell, a senior transfer from Butler, finished with 25 points, including 12 of 18 free throws, and seven rebounds. Tyler had 18 points and six rebounds. Bean added nine points and five rebounds.
Lexington Catholic's loss ended the 11th Region's 10-game first-round winning streak in the Sweet Sixteen.
Tanner Johnson had 21 points and seven rebounds. Talbott had 13 points and four assists. Jarod Griffin had eight points before fouling out with 1:45 left. Reese Ryan added five points, 12 rebounds and five assists.
"I thought they battled really tough, but the game didn't go our way," Catholic Coach Brandon Salsman said. "That's life. That's basketball. That's high school basketball in Kentucky.
"I'm very thankful for my seniors and what they were able to do. They'll have stellar careers and be successful in whatever they want to do. I know it's hard for them to understand that right now."
Talbott said the Knights' lead melted away "because we just weren't taking care of the ball, and they started hitting shots, and we weren't making shots."
A despondent Johnson said the Knights "were up pretty much the whole game, and we just let it slip away at the end."
"I'm going to think about this the rest of my life."
Boyle County moves on to face tournament favorite Ballard in Friday's quarter finals.
Bell cautioned against counting out the Rebels: "If we play with heart and with a chip on our shoulder, we can came out with the win."