For the second straight game, Bolingbrook head coach Tony Smith put the onus on Ariel Massengale to take charge of the Lady Raiders' attack.
And for the second straight game, the senior guard responded in a major way.
Massengale scored 12 of her 17 points in the second half of in Bloomington at the Illinois Wesleyan Super-Sectional.
Coach Smith said Massengale's aggressiveness to start the third quarter was key to the team's push out of the gate in the second half.
"The first half she just stood outside passing the ball around, shot a couple of threes," Smith explained. "The second half, she did a much better job driving the ball inside. That was big for us."
The University of Tennessee signee's second-half renaissance coincided with Bolingbrook's big third quarter effort. The Lady Raiders started the quarter on a 9-2 run, which was part of a 18-8 run of dominance that turned a three-point halftime deficit into a rather comfortable 13-point lead.
Massengale said going into the second-half with a clean start helped get the team going.
"We went in at halftime and saw the game at being 0-0 again. We wanted to come out there with a good start and put them away early," she said.
Massengale added that Smith told her to pick up the pace at halftime. Rather than swinging the ball around the perimeter and settling for jump shots against a packed-in 2-3 zone, Smith suggested Massengale attack the zone and make plays as she went toward the basket.
With a new-found sense of direction, Massengale executed the plan of attack flawlessly, and the Lady Raiders turned it around on both ends of the floor.
"(Coach Smith) told us we were letting our offense dictate our defense. On offense, we had to be more patient," Massengale said. "Yes the 3-point shot was open, but we had to get in the lane. We had to make the baskets we wanted to make and not let them force us into doing something we weren't used to doing."
"Coach told me I had to be more aggressive and get in the lane. We were settling for jump shots and that's not what we do."
What started with an unfamiliar game pace resulted in a familiar end for the Lady Raiders—a victory and a spot in the Class 4A Final Four.