Brewer takes third place
Special to the Enquirer
HUNTSVILLE – Brewer secured a berth in the AHSAA Elite Eight during the Class 5A North Super-Regional tournament at the Von Braun Civic Center on Saturday.
Brewer fought its way past John Carroll to mark its spot at the state level but struggled in a loss against Lawrence County. The Patriots found redemption in a thrilling fifth set victory to claim third place in the region against Boaz.
Brewer’s road to state began against Sylacauga on Friday. The Patriots claimed victory in three quick sets, outscoring their opponent 25-10, 25-7 and 25-8. The victory set Brewer to face John Carroll in its first match on Saturday.
Brewer struggled early against John Carroll, falling in the first two sets 26-24 and 25-20. The Patriots were resilient enough to answer back with the 25-23, 25-23 and 15-13 set victories to move onto face Lawrence County for a shot at the championship.
“The first match against John Carroll took so much out of us because we had to put so much into it to win it, and I don’t think we ever fully recovered during the day,” said Brewer head Coach Ron Smith.
The Patriots continue its struggles as they fell to Lawrence County in three sets; 25-18, 25-14, 25-18. Though Brewer had already qualified for state with its victory over John Carroll, the loss to Lawrence County left the Patriots to fight for a third place seed.
To claim third place Brewer faced Boaz. The Patriots bounced back from their earlier defeat to claim the first set 25-20. However Boaz answered back with two set victories of 26-24 and 25-21. Brewer was resilient enough again to take set three 25-23 and send the match into and exciting fifth set.
“We found a way to win,” said Smith. “It’s been a very emotional and tiring day but we ended up finding a way to win big.”
Following a long back and forth battle, the Patriots secured their third place seed with a 15-13 fifth set victory over the Pirates.
“Fourth place would have most likely put us against St. Pauls in the first round of the state tournament,” Smith said. “The other teams are going to be really good too, but it just gives us a better feeling being third instead of fourth. Plus we leave here with a win instead of a loss is a major motivating factor.”
Brewer moves on to face Rehobeth in the first round of the state tournament. The match is set for 11 am in Birmingham.
“I told the seniors that it would be nice for them to have a ring before they left,” Smith said. “They have done a good job of leading all year but they need to continue to keep these younger girls up and convince them that they have a real good shot when we get down to Birmingham.”