Shenandoah started fast in the fourth quarter, capping an 8-1 run with a 3-pointer by Kimball that made it 39-32 with 5:23 to play.
“Our girls really executed our game plan,” Kilian said. “Our goal was to make (Mackenzie) Boles beat us from the outside. She knocked down a couple of 3s, but I think we did a good job of taking away some secondary options.”
Boles was 3-for-5 from 3-point range, but the Bulldogs struggled to get anything going in the paint until the second half. Point guard Kirsten Rich eventually found success driving into the lane and scored all of her team-high 15 points in the final 16 minutes.
But Lapel clawed back into the game with the help of another guard, Natalia Campbell. Her steal off an overthrown inbounds pass resulted in a layup to cut the deficit to 41-39 with 2:34 remaining, and a 3-pointer with 1:39 left muted a quick Raiders rally and pulled the Bulldogs within 44-42.
Campbell finished with 11 points, matching Boles’ total.
Krathwohl turned the game. She scored 13 points in the fourth quarter, routinely coming up with baskets in critical situations.
She and Rich traded buckets until the 33-second mark, leaving Shenandoah clinging to a 48-46 lead.
The Raiders broke Lapel’s press, and Rudy had an open look from the wing on the decisive possession. But her shot sailed wide. Krathwohl pulled down the rebound and was fouled by Rich going back up for the basket.
Rich fouled out on the play, and Krathwohl added the free throw to put the Raiders ahead 51-46. Kaitlin Dobbins hit a pair of free throws to keep hope alive for the Bulldogs, but Rudy put the game away with a pair of clutch charity shots of her own at the other end.
Shenandoah will play for its first sectional championship since 2008 tonight at 7:30.
“The girls wanted this game,” Kilian said. “But we want them to stay hungry. We’ve got one more to get.”