It was an all-Brentwood evening at Independence High School on Tuesday night as the Brentwood Bruins defeated Ravenwood 3-1 in the Region 6 Championship match.
The Bruins (32-10) started out the first set of the championship match on a 5-0 run, determined to get revenge on the Raptors (13-11) for sweeping Brentwood during the district championship last week.
"It really feels special," Brentwood senior Ashley Miller said. "It helps to know, too, that we don't live in the past. We focus on the now and not what already happened."
Ravenwood came back to tie things at 6-6, and the set was back-and-forth from that point on, with the Bruins winning 25-22.
The second set saw Ravenwood give Brentwood their best counter punch as the Raptors won 25-22, tying the match up at 1-1.
However, the Bruins would win the next two sets 25-19 and 25-20 to come away with a 4-1 series win, a Region 6 title, and ultimate bragging rights in the Battle of the Woods.
"It feels incredible," Brentwood senior Dylan Sulcer said. "We didn't get the outcome we wanted last time we played them, and we know we can beat them. We know when we play together as a team and we have that determination, we are fully capable of beating Ravenwood, and we just showed that tonight."
Win you play in arguably the best district in the state, it prepares a team for the postseason.
"We are in the toughest district, not just in Williamson County, but in the whole state," Brentwood head coach Cathy Cram said. "Anybody can win a match. It's just a matter of who wants it more, and we wanted it more tonight."
Miller and freshman Eliza McKnight tied for the team lead in kills with 15, while freshman Daisy Oatsvall added 10. Sulcer dished out a team-high 50 assists.
Bella LePore led Ravenwood with 18 digs, Mackenzie Bidwell had a team-best 17 assists, and Reaghan Larkin led with 11 kills.
The semifinals weren't quite as dramatic as the championship match was as both matches ended up in sweeps.
In the first semifinal, Ravenwood knocked out Summit in three sets 25-13, 25-12, 25-16.
The Spartans (17-17) fought back in the final set, carrying an early lead all the way to 13-11, but the Raptors closed out strong to continue their hot streak by earning their fourth consecutive sweep.
In the second semifinal, Brentwood defeated the hosts Independence in a slightly closer sweep 25-20, 25-22, 25-17.
The Eagles (16-8) led for much of the first half of the third set, but the Bruins took the lead at the 12-11 mark and never looked back.
Miller led Brentwood with 17 kills in the semifinal win, while Sulcer had a team-high 26 assists.
LePore once again led the Raptors with 18 digs, while Julia Hynes led with 13 kills.
Brentwood's Miller was named the MVP of the regional tournament, while her teammates Sulcer, Oatsvall, and Callie Cummins were named to the all-region team.
Other all-region honorees included Ravenwood's Bidwell, LePore, and Larkin, Independence's Brooke Bolden and Zoe Finkler, and Summit's Haley Riley and Alyssa Elleman.
Brentwood and Ravenwood will now both advance to the sectional round. The Bruins will take on the runner-up of region 5, Station Camp, while the Raptors will face the region 5 winner, Hillsboro.