Fortunately for Glenbard West sophomore Kyler Kotsakis, he didn't have any big tests at school Wednesday.
"Oh, yeah, definitely," Kotsakis said, admitting to looking ahead to Wednesday night's Glenbard West regional final against No. 7 seed Benet. "I wasn't really paying attention at all."
Contact information ( * required )
Kotsakis and the second-seeded Hilltoppers had no trouble paying attention to Benet (25-12), rolling to a 25-20, 25-9 victory and earning a trip to Friday's Hinsdale Central sectional semifinal against St. Francis.
"The nerves were kind of there a little bit today," Kotsakis said. "Throughout school I was just thinking about this game, how important it was. But now that we've got this championship, all the nerves are gone and we're just going to see how far we can go. It should be a fun ride."
Kotsakis had 10 kills, 3 blocks and 2 digs and was a force for the Hilltoppers (31-6), who won only their second boys volleyball regional championship.
"Kyler played amazing," Benet coach Amy Van Eekeren said. "Kyler was a dominant player for them tonight. We just weren't able to stop him."
Glenbard West didn't take its first lead in Game 1 until 12-11. Five ties followed until a Kotsakis kill gave the Hilltoppers the lead for good at 19-18.
Game 2 was all Glenbard West, which jumped out to leads of 10-4 and 16-5.
"We just had that energy and just kind of rolled through them," Kotsakis said.
"I feel like we lost all confidence," Van Eekeren added. "I don't know why. The first set we were point for point and had a lead the majority of the first half of the match. Only a point or two, but we had the lead."
But Glenbard West had homecourt advantage.
"You want to win in your own gym. That's why we're here," Hilltoppers coach Christine Giunta-Mayer said of the second time the Hilltoppers have hosted a regional. "They were very smooth, and I think one thing that they did collectively was serve-receive was outstanding today. ...
"Testimony to Benet, they're an excellent team, they know how to get on runs. They're phenomenal servers. You have to be really careful with them. We just were really focused on that serve-receive and today was our day."