If Shakespeare were a modern-day sportswriter and covered the Sweet Sixteen Friday night, he might have penned something along the lines of "Boyle, Boyle, toil and trouble" with his feather pen.
He would've been describing how Boyle County toiled relentlessly for 32 minutes and stirred up all kinds of trouble for Ballard.
Boyle County didn't just upset the tournament favorite Bruins, it put an 85-70 hurt on them in the quarterfinals of the 98th Whitaker Bank/KHSAA Sweet Sixteen.
"Wow," was the first reaction of Rebels Coach Steve Adams in his post-game press conference.
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Jeremiah Bell, one of Boyle County's heroes who was sitting beside Adams, took a towel and pretended to wipe the sweat off his coach's face.
There were smiles aplenty on the podium as Adams, Bell, Hagen Tyler and Colton Elkins soaked up the joy that came with ending Ballard's 27-game winning streak.
(It was also the 12th Region's first win over a 7th Region team in the state tournament since 1982.)
Everybody in Rupp Arena probably had a difficult time processing what they were witnessing, especially when Boyle County went on a 15-0 run in the third quarter to open a 60-40 lead.
But Bell, a transfer from Butler who brought a swagger with him from Louisville, said he "told my boys again, anything can happen in March.
"We were underdogs since region play, so we knew we didn't have anything to lose."
Tyler hit a pair of threes in the opening minutes to get the Rebels' off to a fast start. Ballard Coach Chris Renner said it reminded him of the 2003 finals when Mason County's Chris Lofton lit up the Bruins from long range.
Tyler finished with 32 points (6-for-10 threes, 10-for-10 free throws). The 6-foot-3 senior also had 12 rebounds.
Bell, a 6-0 senior, had 26 points (16-for-19 free throws) and 12 rebounds.
Elkins, a 6-5 junior who didn't score against Lexington Catholic Wednesday or in the first half against Ballard, came alive for 14 points in the second half. He had a couple of fierce dunks that fired up his team.
"Our emotions went crazy," Bell said.
What fired up Adams was Elkins hitting six of eight free throws. "Sometimes we need safety glasses in practice when he shoots them," Adams quipped.
It was that kind of night for Boyle County, which made a Sweet Sixteen record 40 (of 47) free throws.
Adams said the Rebels shot 25 more free throws than Ballard because they were attacking the rim.
Boyle County also showed its grit by outrebounding the Bruins 39-26.
"I can't tell you how proud I am with the heart and determination and love for each other they showed," Adams said.
Ballard made a habit of overcoming big deficits this season, and Renner said he saw the same look in his players' eyes again.
"We never didn't believe we could come back. But we had to hit some shots and make some plays."
But Ballard didn't make enough shots.
Jalen Perry did his best, pouring in 30 points (4-for-8 threes). Jamil Wilson had 13 and Corey Douglas added eight. But the Bruins shot 39 percent, including 6-for-22 threes.
Adams said his pre-game preparation didn't include cautioning his team about Ballard's comeback ability.
"We never had any idea we'd be up 20," he said. "We were thinking we hoped we'd have a chance to win on a last-second shot."