Release from UNC Athletics
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – UNC volleyball continued a historic weekend by earning a new program-high ranking at No. 7 in the latest AVCA Coaches Poll, released Monday.
The Tar Heels earned 1157 votes and moved up one spot after defeating NC State and Florida State last weekend. The two victories also moved No. 7 UNC (22-2, 13-1) into first place in the ACC standings with two weeks left in the regular season.
Carolina swept NC State last Thursday behind eight kills from Leigh Andrew and 10 blocks from Paige Neuenfeldt. UNC held the Wolfpack to a .050 hitting percentage and turned in 16.5 team blocks against NCSU.
Then the Tar Heels knocked off No. 3 FSU, 3-1, for the highest-ranked victory in program history. UNC used a strong serve and block game to sprint past Florida State, as Carolina registered eight aces and 17.5 team blocks. Chaniel Nelson had 15 kills and Neuenfeldt added nine blocks against the Seminoles.
For the weekend, North Carolina stuffed an average of 4.85 blocks/set and dropped in 1.85 aces/set.
Overall, the top 10 reshuffled thanks to two major upsets during last week’s matches. Washington moved down to No. 5 after the Huskies dropped two matches to Utah and Colorado on the road. The upsets moved Utah into the poll at No. 23 and moved Colorado up to No. 19. Overall, the Pac-12 has nine teams ranked in the AVCA Coaches Poll this week.
The FSU and Washington losses leave No. 1 Stanford as the sole remaining undefeated team.
Wisconsin moved up to No. 2, while No. 3 Texas and No. 4 Penn State filled out the top four. Florida State fell to No. 8 in the poll after dropping two matches against UNC and Duke, who reentered the poll at No. 21. Florida, who defeated No. 15 Kentucky on Sunday, stayed one spot ahead of UNC at No. 6. Colorado State moved up one place to No. 9 behind FSU, and Illinois rounds out the top 10 at No. 10.
UNC returns to action this Friday for an 8:00 p.m. road match at Notre Dame. The Tar Heels will stay on the road for a 12 p.m. match-up with Louisville on Sunday.