Sweet 16.

That sounds better than sectional championship match, doesn’t it?

Whatever you call it, the Pekin volleyball team has advanced that far in the postseason, reaching the Class 4A Chatham Glenwood Sectional title match.

The Dragons (31-7) will face Edwardsville (31-5) at 6 p.m. Wednesday with a berth in Friday’s Normal West Supersectional on the line.

This is the deepest postseason run in Yvonne Thompson’s 18 years as Pekin’s coach. The Dragons won their first two regional titles for Thompson last season and this year.

Pekin defeated Normal Community 25-22, 25-22 Monday night in the sectional semifinals, avenging a loss to the Iron last year in the sectional semifinals at Glenwood.

Thompson said the experience the Dragons gained from last year’s defeat to Normal Community (25-19, 25-21) paid dividends this year. Seven Pekin players are back from last year’s team.

“Our girls weren’t intimidated this time around,” Thompson said. “They’re determined to keep our season going as long as we can.”

Thompson said her team had plenty of help in the stands Monday from a crowd of about 100 students, parents, high school administrators, community members and teachers from Edison Junior High School, where Thompson works as a physical education teacher.

The group made the trek to Chatham, located about three miles south of Springfield.

“The athletic director at Glenwood said our crowd was awesome,” Thompson said. “Normal Community’s crowd was mostly their parents.”

As for the match, Bradley recruit Hannah Thompson led Pekin past Normal Community with 16 kills and 14 digs. Brooke Sherwood dished out 16 assists for the Dragons and Anna McGovern had two blocks.

The Iron finished 31-7. Coach Christine Konopasek was disappointed by the loss.

“The most frustrating part is I don’t think we were given anything unexpected,” Konopasek told the Bloomington Pantagraph. “Pekin just did an excellent job of executing their game plan.

“I also thought there were times where they played smarter than us. Two or three times they had us running literally from corner to corner. That’s not something we have seen.

“It seemed like we were out of sorts — frazzled at times. We’ve done a pretty good job, for the most part, this year of keeping our composure.”

Down 21-19 in the first set, the Dragons scored six of the final seven points.

Normal Community scored the first four points of the second set, then Pekin scored the next five. After nine ties, a serving error sent Pekin ahead for good 20-19.

A Hannah Thompson kill and Emma Clark serving ace made it 22-19.

Grace Cleveland’s kill at the end of a long rally appeared to pull Normal Community within 24-23, but the Purdue recruit was called for touching the net and the match — and Cleveland’s high school career — were over.

Cleveland finished with 13 kills.

Indianapolis recruit MaKenna Barnhart had eight kills and 13 digs for Normal Community and Jamie Vasilou had 25 assists and 11 digs.

Yvonne Thompson said her team celebrated the win Monday, then went back to work Tuesday.

“It was back to the drawing board Tuesday and time to get refocused,” she said. “Each step along the way during the postseason gets tougher.”

Steve Stein can be reached at stevestein21@yahoo.com. Follow him on Twitter @SpartanSteve.