Everyone compiling national volleyball rankings owes a big debt of gratitude to the Assumption Rockets.
Besides playing in one of the best cities for volleyball in the country - Louisville, Ky. - the Rockets also play a national schedule that helps tie together many of the teams in the rankings. Assumption has participated in the Muncie Burris Invitational, the Louisville Invitational, the Durango Classic and last week the Asics Challenge.
In total, the Rockets have played 11 games against nine different teams that are currently or at one time were members of the Xcellent 25 National Volleyball Rankings. Those games help shape the national rankings each week as they provide a base against which to judge all other teams.
One team that gained considerably based on its play last week against Assumption was Cary-Grove (Cary, Ill.). Undefeated on the season at 24-0, the Trojans defeated Assumption for first place at the Asics Challenge and move from the No. 12 spot up to the No. 5 ranking.
Assumption, despite four losses, stays in the rankings but falls to No. 9. Assumption's losses are to No. 2 Muncie Burris (Muncie, Ind.), No. 5 Cary Grove, No. 7 Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.) and No. 14 Mercy (Louisville, Ky.). Assumption also has a win over Mercy.
Following is a look at this week's MaxPreps Xcellent 25 Volleyball National Rankings, presented by the Army National Guard:MAXPREPS XCELLENT 25 VOLLEYBALL NATIONAL RANKINGS1. (1) Papillion-LaVista South (Papillion, Neb.), 16-0
The Titans make it two weeks in a row at No. 1 with a pair of wins over North Star (Lincoln, Neb.), 2-1, and Omaha Westside (Neb.), 2-0.2. (2) Muncie Burris (Muncie, Ind.), 28-0
The Owls gave up just 19 points in a win over Union, capturing a 25-4, 25-5, 25-10 victory to up their record to 28-0. Arijana Anderson
and Kendra Carr
each had nine kills and Kelsey Carr
had 34 assists.3. (3) St. James Academy (Lenexa, Kan.), 26-0
In games not previously reported from last week, St. James Academy blanked Blue Valley West (Stilwell, Kan.) 2-0 and St. Teresa's Academy (Kansas City, Mo.), 2-0. St. James Academy also won the Lawrence Invitational over the weekend, topping Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.) 2-1 in the finals. St. James Academy and Bishop Miege meet again in a dual on Oct. 14.4. (6) Ursuline Academy (Cincinnati), 18-0
The Lions remained undefeated with a pair of regular season victories and then a 4-0 record at the Northeast Ohio Tournament in Mentor. Christina Beer
had 29 kills over the weekend to lead the Lions.5. (12) Cary-Grove (Cary, Ill.), 24-0
The Trojans received 13 kills from Kelly Lamberti
in the championship match against Assumption (Louisville, Ky.) to give Cary-Grove the title at the Mother McAuley Asics Challenge over the weekend. Cary-Grove, which had dropped to No. 2 in the state rankings by the Chicago Tribune, defeated Illinois No. 1 Marist in the semifinals with Lamberti getting 13 kills and 10 digs.6. (9) Pope (Marietta, Ga.), 43-1
The Greyhounds played six times during the week, winning every match in dominating fashion with identical 2-0 scores. Pope has lost just one game in the last 21 matches since falling 3-2 to Walton on Sept. 9. Pope begins the area tournament on Oct. 7.7. (4) Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.), 10-1
Just when Wolverines were riding high following a championship performance at the Durango Tournament, Marymount (Los Angeles) stunned Harvard-Westlake with a 3-1 win on Thursday for the Wolverines' first loss of the season. Dani Salka
had 14 kills in the loss while Christina Higgins
had 12. The loss won't drop Harvard-Westlake too much since Marymount topped Harvard-Westlake at home and had a strong showing at Durango as well. The Sailors also have two losses to teams Harvard-Westlake defeated at Durango on a neutral court.8. (10) La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.), 12-1
The Mavericks knocked off two giants in the San Diego Section with a 3-0 win over previously unbeaten La Jolla Country Day (Calif.) and a 3-2 win over Torrey Pines (San Diego). Karsta Lowe
had 16 kills in the win over Torrey Pines while Karlee Fuller
had 12 against the Torreys.
9. (7) Assumption (Louisville, Ky.), 29-4
The Rockets reached the championship match at the Asics Challenge in Illinois with five straight wins, including a 2-0 victory over Berkeley Prep (Tampa, Fla.). Assumption fell in the championship 2-0 to Cary Grove (Cary, Ill.). The Rockets face Mercy (Louisville, Ky.) this week.10. (8) Rose (Greenville, N.C.), 10-0
The Rampants topped Laney (Wilmington, N.C.) in three games with Caroline Douglas
back in the lineup to provide 10 kills. Douglas had missed most of the first month with an injury.11. (11) King (Corpus Christi, Texas), 33-3
The Mustangs upped their win streak to 18 in a row with 3-0 wins over South San Antonio (Texas) and Highlands (San Antonio).12. (13) Bishop Miege (Shawnee Mission, Kan.), 17-3
The Stags reached the finals of the Lawrence Invitational but lost to St. James Academy for the third time this season, falling 2-1. The two teams meet again on Oct. 14.13. (5) La Jolla Country Day (Calif.), 8-1
The Torreys defeated returning Division V state runner-up Tri-City Christian (Vista, Calif.) in three games and also topped San Pasqual (Escondido, Calif.) with a 3-0 score, but lost its first match of the season to La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.), 3-0.14. (14) Mercy (Louisville, Ky.), 25-4
The Jaguars had a light schedule last week, downing Notre Dame Academy (Park Hills, Ky.) 3-1. Mercy has a tough week ahead with Assumption at home and then Sacred Heart (Louisville, Ky.) and Mount Notre Dame (Cincinnati) on the road.15. (15) Berkeley Prep (Tampa, Fla.), 17-2
The Buccaneers lost for the second time this year to a team from Louisville, falling to Assumption at the Mother McAuley Asics Challenge in Illinois. Berkeley Prep rebounded to top Marist (Chicago) to finish in third place.16. (16) Long Beach Poly (Calif.), 16-2
The Jackrabbits won twice in Moore League play last week, topping Cabrillo (Long Beach, Calif.) and Jordan (Long Beach, Calif.) by identical 3-0 scores.17. (17) Jesuit (Portland, Ore.), 15-0
The Crusaders went 5-0 last week including 3-0 at the State Preview Tournament. Jesuit has lost just one game on the season and Elizabeth Brenner
leads the team with 194 kills.18. (18) Lovejoy (Lucas, Texas), 30-3
The Leopards won once last week, topping Farmersville 3-0 in district play.19. (19) Pearce (Richardson, Texas), 32-3
The Mustangs won both matches last week, defeating district foe McKinney (Texas) 3-0 and McKinney North (Texas), 3-0. Pearce finished the first round of district play undefeated at 7-0 and begins the second round this week.20. (20) Lake Travis (Austin, Texas), 35-2
The Cavaliers upped their record with three wins, including a 2-0 triumph over Leander (Texas) and a 2-0 win over Rouse (Leander, Texas).21 (21) Westlake (Austin, Texas), 33-2
The Chaparrals won a pair, whipping Austin (Texas) 3-0 last week and edging Bowie (Austin, Texas), 2-0.22. (22) Cy-Woods (Cypress, Texas), 33-1
The Wildcats, ranked third in the Texas Girls Coaches Association Rankings, won their 13th in a row and stayed undefeated in District 17-5A play at 11-0 with wins over Cypress Creek (Houston) 3-0 and Cy-Fair (Cypress, Texas), 3-2.23. (23) Marist (Chicago), 23-2
The Red Hawks lost twice at the Mother McAuley Asics Challenge to finish in fourth place in the Gold Division. Marist lost in the semifinals to eventual champion Cary-Grove and then fell to Berkeley Prep (Tampa, Fla.) in the third-place match.24. (24) Marian (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), 41-2
The Mustangs rebounded from their second loss of the season last week to win eight straight, including a 6-0 mark and a first-place finish at the Marian Invitational. Marian topped Seaholm (Birmingham, Mich.) 2-0 in the finals. Alexandra Lovell
had 10 kills in the championship match and 37 for the tournament. She had 27 kills in a 3-1 win over Mercy (Farmington Hills, Mich.) earlier in the week.25. (NR) Presentation (San Jose, Calif.), 17-2
The Panthers could be the top team in Northern California this year. Their only losses are to La Jolla Country Day (Calif.) at the Archbishop Mitty Tournament and Los Gatos on the Wildcats' home floor. Presentation also has a win over Los Gatos and has twice defeated Archbishop Mitty, last year's Xcellent 25 National No. 1 team.