Red Lion girls' basketball coach Don Dimoff said he challenged his team after heading into the locker room down six points at halftime of their game at South Western on Tuesday evening.
Anybody who has seen the fiery, intense Dimoff on the sideline would understand how that likely played out.
Red Lion returned for the second half and held South Western to just five second-half points to rally for a 37-22 YAIAA Division I win and remain undefeated on the season.
"We didn't come out with energy, we didn't come out with emotion," Dimoff said. "We didn't execute. We just looked disengaged. The second half, we just went back to the nuts and bolts of what we do defensively and executed a little better offensively.
"I was proud of the way we responded in the second half. I'm just glad to get out of here with the win."
Red Lion (9-0, 5-0 Division I) scored 14 third-quarter points after an 11-point first half. Senior guard Courtney Dimoff nailed two 3-point goals and scored eight of her game-high 15 points in that period.
The 5-foot-10 Dimoff connected on all three of her baskets in a 78-second span that saw the Lions turn a two-point deficit into a six-point lead.
"I really challenged Courtney at halftime," Coach Dimoff said. "I have to give her credit for the way she stood up."
While Red Lion woke up offensively, the Lions also upped the ante on defense and held South Western to 1-of-9 shooting from the field in the third quarter. A Madisyn McMaster layup with 42 seconds left in the quarter accounted for the Mustangs only third-quarter points.
"That was great defense," Dimoff said. "We talked about making the rotations, but in the second half we actually made them. It was a tale of two halves, that's for sure."
Things didn't get much better in the final eight minutes for the Mustangs, as they hit only 1-of-7 shot attempts.
"We did crumble a little bit when Red Lion upped the pressure," said South Western third-year coach Kevin Klunk. "But Red Lion does that to a lot of people, some that have more experience than us."
South Western (4-4, 3-3 Division I) jumped out to a 6-1 lead to open the game and led by as many as eight points during the second quarter.
"We played tremendous defense," Klunk said. "We just couldn't get anything going on offense, especially in the second half. That might be an understatement there. (Red Lion) just turned it up (defensively). We couldn't move. We couldn't go anywhere. No matter what we tried to run."
Red Lion (37)
Reba 1 1-2 3, Maciejewski 3 0-0 6, Courtney Dimoff 4 4-4 15, Funke 1 0-0 2, Harvey 1 0-0 2, Wolf 4 0-0 8, Sheperd 0 1-2 1, P. Shingler 0 0-0 0. Totals — 14 6-8 37.
South Western (22)
Feeder 2 0-0 4, Shipley 1 1-4 3, Gough 0 0-0 0, Geiman 3 1-2 8, Soullaird 0 0-0 0, Walker 1 0-0 2, McMaster 2 1-1 5, Wisensale 0 0-0 0. Totals — 9 3-7 22.
Red Lion _ 5 _ 6 _ 14 _ 12 _ — _ 37
South Western _ 9 _ 8 _ 2 _ 3 _ — _ 22
3-point goals — Red Lion 3 (Dimoff 3), South Western 1 (Geiman).
JV score — South Western 41, Red Lion 27.