Blake Pennington hit a 3-point shot at the buzzer Monday night to give the Mercer County boys a 69-67 victory over Boyle County at Harrodsburg.
Pennington’s basket put Mercer (14-9) ahead at the end of a game between the only area boys teams with winning records in which the lead changed hands 13 times.
Hagen Tyler, who scored a career-high 34 points for Boyle (13-9), had given the Rebels a one-point lead by scoring with 4 seconds remaining. But after a timeout with 3.5 seconds to go, Mercer’s John Ingram drove into the frontcourt, then suddenly passed the ball to Pennington, who fired from in front of the Titans’ bench just before time expired.
Pennington also set up the basket that sent the game to overtime with a steal with less than 30 seconds left in regulation. Jordan Duncan, who led Mercer with 22 points, tied the game at 61-all with a layup off a pass from Ingram with 21 seconds to play.
Boyle held for the final shot, but Tyler missed an off-balance attempt with 2 seconds on the clock.
Tyler scored just over half the Rebels’ points, going 4 for 9 from 3-point range and 15 for 28 overall from the field.
He and Ingram traded baskets early in the overtime period before a free throw by Russell Sims following a steal by Pennington gave Mercer a 64-63 lead with 42 seconds remaining.
Duncan hit two free-throws at :34 to make it 66-63, but Boyle’s Josiah Robbins sank a 15-foot shot at :20 to make it a one-point game, and Sims missed the front end of the bonus on the other end to open the door for Tyler’s basket that gave Boyle its last lead.
Mercer shot 46 percent (28 for 61) from the field and was 6 for 18 from 3-point range, while Boyle shot 47 percent (31 for 66) overall and hit five of 15 3-point shots. The Titans were 7 for 14 at the free-throw line; the Rebels were 0 for 2.
Ingram had 14 points and 10 assists, Sims had 11 points and 12 rebounds, Pennington also had 11 points and Duncan had five rebounds for Mercer.
Micah Miniard had 16 points and 12 rebounds for Boyle. Tyler, Brett Jones and Aram Martin had six rebounds each, helping the Rebels outrebound the Titans 42-31.
Mercer surged in front late in the third quarter, taking a 47-40 lead that was the largest advantage for either team.
There were five lead changes in the fourth quarter, the last coming when Tyler buried a 3-pointer with 2:16 remaining to give Boyle a 58-57 edge. He scored again with 59 seconds remaining to put the Rebels up by four points before Mercer cut that margin in half on a putback by Sims at :48.
Lincoln County 69, Madison Southern 55 — At Berea, Luke Hill and Jacob Conway combined for 37 points and 15 rebounds to lead Lincoln (12-14) over Madison Southern (14-9).
Hill had 19 points and seven rebounds and Conway had 18 points and eight rebounds for the Patriots, who pulled away by outscoring the Eagles 20-10 in the third quarter to take a 49-37 lead.
Lincoln shot 57 percent (25 for 44) from the field and hit seven of 13 3-point shots and 12 of 16 free throws.
Timmy Taylor had 10 assists and Brandon Pittman had four for the Patriots, who had 19 assists and only six turnovers.
Monday’s Area High School Linescores
Boyle County 13 30 42 61 67
Mercer County 11 28 47 61 69
BOYLE (13-9) — Aram Martin 2, Devin True 2, Micah Miniard 16, Brett Jones 7, Hagen Tyler 34, Josiah Robbins 4, Lloyd Hall 2.
MERCER (14-9) — Jordan Duncan 22, John Ingram 14, Will Hager 7, Russell Sims 11, Blake Pennington 11, Tommy Craig 4.
Lincoln County 15 34 49 69
Madison Southern 11 27 37 55
LINCOLN (12-14) — Timmy Taylor 8, B.J. Hoover 7, Brandon Pittman 8, Jacob Conway 18, Luke Hill 19, Neal Conley 9.
MADISON SOUTHERN (14-9) — Damien Harris 10, Mike Rethermel 2, Tyler Abshear 24, Spencer Stone 8, Drew Taylor 4, Marlin Taylor 4, Trevor Huff 3.