The Southwestern varsity volleyball team doesn't take too kindly to being called the underdogs.
So, even though they weren't favored to do so, coach Jane Wills' squad traveled to Deerfield last Saturday night, snatched up the division 3 regional plague and brought it home to add to the trophy case.
After knocking off Darlington and Cuba City prior to Saturday's regional final match, the Wildcats earned a date with the Deerfield Demons.
Ranked eighth in the state and seeded second in their regional bracket, the Wildcats needed to play at the top of their game to defeat the fourth-ranked team in the state and the top seeded squad in their bracket.
The Wildcats did just that, as they came back from a 1-0 deficit to win the next three sets and walk away with a 3-1 victory over the Demons.
After losing the first set, 25-17, coach Wills' squad pulled out three straight narrow victories of 26-24, 26-24 and 25-23.
According to coach Wills, Saturday's game plan was centered around Deerfield sophomore, Maddie Lobenstein, a 6'3" outside hitter.
"Our goal was to run our offense away from her blocking, side out immediately when she was in the front row, and execute our offense to score points when she was in the back," said coach Wills.
"Between the girls running the game plan perfectly, and playing with heart and confidence, we were able to succeed in becoming the regional champions."
Katelyn Hoppman led the Wildcats to victory with 22 kills and six solo blocks, while Alyssa Iserman had 12 kills and three ace serves to her credit.
Dishing out 32 assists was Molly Wubben, who also went 12-for-12 at the service stripe and came away with 10 digs.
Katie Droeszler played an important role in Southwestern's victory, as the she led the Wildcats with a season-high 19 digs
The win not only secured a D3 regional title, and improved Southwestern's record to 29-2, but it also set up a sectional semifinal meeting with Markesan this Thursday night back in Deerfield.
Coach Wills' squad advanced to Saturday's regional final with a 3-0 sweep of Darlington last Tuesday night, followed by a 3-1 victory over Cuba City on Thursday.
Against Darlington, Hoppman put down 18 kills, while Wubben had 25 assists. Rachel Haugen also had a spectacular nine ace serves to Jordan Martin's four.
In their match against Cuba City, Hoppman had 27 kills to Iserman's 23, as Wubben distributed 45 assists.