Overtime upset: Rebels ousted in overtime in first round of 12th Region tournament by Southwestern

Published 11:29 pm Wednesday, February 28, 2018

SOMERSET — It wasn’t the dream finish for the 45th District’s top seed.

Boyle County lost to Southwestern 62-60 in overtime in the first round of the 12th Region Tournament at Pulaski County High School on Wednesday.

It’s the first time since 2013 that the Rebels didn’t make it past the first round of the region tournament.

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“We just didn’t make the plays that we needed to,” Boyle head coach Steve Adams said. “Obviously it hurt having one of your leading scorers on the bench for two-thirds of the game. But you’ve got to be mentally focused to make plays. The kids played their hearts out, they played hard. They’re very disappointed right now, we all are. But like I told them, you can’t let one game on a one-and-done deal ruin what you’ve done all year long.”

Boyle’s second-leading scorer on the season, Bryce Slone, was in foul trouble the entire night and fouled out away from the action in the fourth quarter. He scored two points in just 12 minutes of action.

Reese Smith was the one to step up on the score sheet for Boyle. Smith played with two broken fingers in his left hand, an injury he suffered in the 45th District championship game against Danville.

He finished the game with 24 points, tied for the game high, and didn’t miss one second on the court.

“He just played tough. Him and Grant Hotchkiss are killers,” Adams said. “They want to win so bad and they’d do anything to win. They’ve got a lot of heart, all of them did. Those two played well tonight, Reese really stepped up. He was in a lot of pain, but he played through it.”

Smith and Jason Alexander combined for 28 of Boyle’s 30 halftime points, and the Rebels led 30-23.

But in the third quarter, Boyle struggled to find its rhythm on offense. Slone started the quarter but it didn’t take long for him to be whistled for his third foul.

“It really hurt not having Bryce in the game, it kind of took us out of our rhythm on both ends of the floor,” Adams said. “But those things happen and you’ve got to battle through it.”

Southwestern was led by Hunter Stevens and Jonathon Gallagher, each scoring 24 points.

“We made some mistakes, didn’t close out on No. 12 (Stevens), let him get happy,” Adams said. “I know three times in the first half and a couple times there late.”

Boyle continued to be the team in the lead in the fourth quarter: The Rebels led by four, 51-47, with the ball and just 1:45 on the clock.

A steal and basket by Southwestern cut the lead to two points. Caleb Jackson missed the front end of a one-and one with Boyle ahead 51-49 with 43 seconds left, and Southwestern tied the game with 3.8 seconds remaining.

Boyle’s last play of regulation didn’t result in a shot.

In overtime, Smith scored the first two points at the foul line — he finished 10-for-11 from the charity stripe — but Stevens hit a three to put the Warriors ahead 54-53, and that’d be the final lead change of the game.

“Our kids did a tremendous job, we just made a few mental mistakes that you can’t make in this type of game,” Adams said. “But they gave it everything that they had. We had a chance, we missed some one-and-ones. But the kids played their hearts out.”

Adams praised his seniors — Slone, Alexander, Will Bramel and Matthew Bodner — after the game, even if Wednesday’s loss isn’t how he said they deserved to go out.

“They had a great career. This is the first time that they haven’t been to the semifinals of the region,” Adams said. “Don’t discount what Matthew Bodner means to our team. Every day in practice, he’s the other team’s point guard, he’s pushing everybody and he does a great job. We wouldn’t be where we were without him. Bryce and Baby J, they’re both 1,000 point scorers and they had tremendous careers. I hate it had to end this way. Big Will, he’s our floor leader. He plays hard, played tonight. You just really hate it for them.”


Box score


12th Region quarterfinals

At Pulaski County


BOYLE COUNTY 16 14 10 11 9 60

SOUTHWESTERN 13 10 16 12 11 62



BOYLE (19-8): Reese Smith 24, Jason Alexander 21, Grant Hotchkiss 8, Will Bramel 5, Bryce Slone 2.

SOUTHWESTERN (16-14): Hunter Stevens 24, Jonathon Gallagher 24, Logan Dykes 6, Jalen Molden 4, Joe Floyd 2, Matthew Jones 2.



BOYLE: Alexander 7, Smith 6, Bramel 3, Hotchkiss 3, Caleb Jackson 2, Slone 1, Team 5.

SOUTHWESTERN: Jones 6, Dykes 6, Stevens 3, Gallagher 3, Molden 1.



BOYLE: Bramel 4, Hotchkiss 3, Alexander 2, Smith 1, Slone 1, Cameron Yates 1.

SOUTHWESTERN: Stevens 5, Jones 4, Floyd 1, Dykes 1.