When Blaine entered its locker room at halftime Thursday, something did not feel right.
The Bengals had outgained Minnetonka 235 yards to the Skippers' 72 and forced three turnovers.
But Blaine led only 12-0 in the Class 6A quarterfinal.
Whatever happened inside the Bengals' locker room at Park Center High School, it preceded a 21-point third quarter that included touchdowns on Blaine's first two drives. Big offensive plays and a suffocating defense earned the Bengals a 39-14 victory and a trip to U.S. Bank Stadium next week.
"He really did not say much," Byron Bynum Jr. said of Blaine coach Thomas Develice's halftime talk. "We knew we would get going sooner or later. Offense struggles at times, but we have our good moments when we get moving on the ball."
The Bengals' good moments came in bunches. Blaine quarterback Connor Melton threw touchdown passes of 24, 42, 53 and 81 yards. He finished with 300 yards passing.
Bynum had 166 yards receiving and caught Melton's 42- and 81-yard touchdown passes. On both scores the 5-9 receiver proved he was the fastest player on the field.
"We have Byron. We have Kurtis Weigand out there blocking for him and Chase Harper as our running back," Develice said. "We feel good about those guys clicking on all cylinders. They are unselfish and understand when it's not their number called, then it is somebody else."
The Blaine defense repeatedly set up its offense, forcing five turnovers and getting five tackles for loss. Melton's 53-yard TD pass came three plays after Shea Gerrety recovered a Skippers fumble eight minutes into the third quarter.
Gerrety's brother, Sam, had a fumble recovery and an interception. He and Shea are sons of Blaine activities director and volunteer coach Shannon Gerrety.
"Those [Gerrety] kids grew up living and dying with football," Develice said. "It is their leadership and tradition of playing football that made them want to get [Blaine] back on the map."