Or two losses in a row?
HighSchoolCube will carry Thursday's volleyball match between No. 1-ranked Benet and No. 2 Marist live. The match is scheduled for a 6:15 p.m. start. Marian Catholic ended Benet's 36-match unbeaten streak on Tuesday. Go to www.HighSchoolCube.com for the broadcast.
The "Cube" will also broadcast Gold division games and the championship of the Silver division from the Asics Volleyball Challenge at Mother McAuley on Saturday, September 29. Go to http://www.highschoolcube.com/tournaments/asics-volleyball-challenge-at-mother-mcauley-liberal-arts-high-school-illinois for the action from McAuley.
Chicago Sun-Times 2012 Top 10 Girls Volleyball Teams
(Last week's ranking in parenthesis)
1. Benet 16-0 (2)
Whodda thunk? Benet is back on top the rankings. That's Benet, which lost four Division I players from last year's state championship team - Meghan Haggerty (Nebraska), Jenna Jendryk (Dayton), Gabby Pethokoukis (Villanova) and Maddie Haggerty (St. Francis). All the Redwings have done is beat Marist (which just handed McAuley its first loss), West Aurora (only loss to Benet at early tournament), Sandburg, Naperville Central and Nazareth. But it doesn't get easier. Next up? Marian Catholic (Tuesday) and Marist (Thursday) on the road.
2. Marist 13-3 (3)
Rachel Dalton had nine blocks, Elyse Panick had four, Mallory Salis had 18 kills and Carolyn Yerkes added 14 digs as the RedHawks rallied to beat McAuley 18-25, 25-22, 25-22 in the finals of the Rich East tournament Saturday and avenge one of their three losses. They will get a chance to even another score Thursday when they entertain Benet. But first, a trip to Providence on Tuesday, no easy task. By the end of the week, don't be surprised to see the RedHawks back on top the rankings.
3. Mother McAuley 12-1 (1)
The Mighty Macs squandered a 19-15 lead in Game Three and solid performances by Ryann DeJarld (13 kills), Courtney Joyce (25 assists) and Kelsey Clark (six kills) in their Rich East championship match against south side rival Marist. A product of inexperience? Possibly. But you get the feeling the teams will meet again in a match considerably more important than Saturday's. Still, a week which saw the Mighty Macs reach the finals of Rich East and beat Providence 25-21, 26-28, 25-15 cannot be considered a bad week.
4. St. Francis 18-3 (4)
The Spartans' went 4-1 at Rich East, losing to Marist in the semifinals before bouncing back (25-21, 21-25, 25-22) against Sandburg in the third-place match. Earlier in the week, St. Francis had little trouble with Aurora Central Catholic - Mary Boken served up 10 points and Molly Haggerty added three blocks - and Batavia, which had an impressive performance at Waubonsie Valley Saturday. St. Francis hosts Wheaton Academy on Monday then tunes up for the Asics Challenge at Mother McAuley this weekend.
5. Glenbard West 21-0 (5)
Caleigh Ryan's 25 assists and 11 digs, 15 kills from Amanda Perry and six kills and 10 digs from Megan Wagner powered the Hilltoppers to an 18-25, 25-14, 25-17 victory over West Suburban Silver nemesis Lyons last week. Twenty-four hours earlier, Glenbard West defeated Palatine and 6-3 Taylor Fricano 25-20, 25-14. Coach Pete Mastandrea has a diamond in the rough - or maybe not so rough - in freshman Natalie Schilling, who had four kills and two blocks against Lyons and gives Glenbard West another weapon.
6. West Aurora 16-1 (6)
West Aurora shared the DuPage Valley Conference title with Naperville North last year. The Blackhawks have other ideas this fall. Lauren Carlini had 13 kills, 14 assists and five digs and Nerissa Vogt added six kills and five blocks as West Aurora defeated Naperville North 25-23, 26-24 in the team's first meeting of the season last week. The Blackhawks also took down West Chicago to run their win streak to 12. Next up? Road trips to Glenbard East on Tuesday and Wheaton Warrenville South on Thursday.
7. New Trier 16-0 (7)
The Trevians had a little trouble with Central Suburban League rival Maine South last week, but rallied from a first-set loss to defeat the Hawks 23-25, 25-23, 25-17. A non-conference contest with York four days later went much smoother as New Trier rolled to a 25-18, 25-17 victory on Saturday. Three of the Trevians' next four matches are on the road, including stops at Evanston, Lake Forest and Waukegan, before the Glenbrook North invite on October 5-6.
8. Joliet Catholic 10-1 (8)
An easy week last week for the Angels, who had little trouble with Bishop McNamara and Carmel. Tuesday, Joliet Catholic travels to Arlington Heights to take on St. Viator before getting in some work prior to the Asics Challenge hosted by Mother McAuley on Friday and Saturday. The Angels' schedule heats up in the next few weeks with matches against the East Suburban Catholic elite including Providence, Benet Marist and Marian Catholic.
9. Hinsdale South 12-3 (10)
Only one match on the calendar last week, a victory over Downers Grove South. Next up? A visit by Addison Trail on Tuesday and a road trip to York on Thursday, Barring a calamity of epic proportions, look for Hinsdale South to pull down a top three seed at the Mizuno Cup tournament hosted by St. Charles East at the Great Lakes Volleyball Center in Aurora on October 5-6.
10. Libertyville 11-3 (NR)
Libertyville won a big North Suburban showdown with Stevenson on Wednesday, turning back the Patriots 21-25, 25-17, 25-21 to improve to 3-0 in the Lake division. Kristen Webb had 25 digs, Rhiannon Prentiss added 13 digs and six kills, Cindy Zhou had 20 assists and seven kills and Taylor Zant added nine kills and nine digs. "Stevenson had our number early, but defensive adjustments and tough serving keyed the change in momentum." Said Libertyville coach Greg Loika, who got his 100th career win at Libertyville.
Others: Stevenson, Naperville Central, Providence, Sandburg, Marian Catholic, Lincoln-Way Central, St. Ignatius, Lockport, Lincoln-Way East, Prairie Ridge, Naperville North, Nazareth, Chicago Christian, Palatine, Hersey, Fremd, Crystal Lake South, Crystal Lake Central, Jacobs, Immaculate Conception, Stagg, Montini, Lemont, Glenbard South, West Chicago.
Quote of the Week: "I am happy to share this victory with Kristin Webb and Cindy Zhou, who have been with me since 2009 when I took over from Hall of Famer Chris Tryzna. Chris established a strong legacy of excellent volleyball in Libertyville and it has been an honor to share in that tradition. It was especially an honor to be able to celebrate this victory with girls who've been there since the beginning. To have it come against Stevenson, who had our number earlier this season, is also especially meaningful." - Libertyville coach Greg Loika on his 100th career win Wednesday, a 21-25, 25-17, 25-21 victory over Stevenson.
Quote II: "It's awful that she's (Rachel Baader) out, but we do have a really good replacement in Khaila Donaldson. She's really stepped up. She's doing really well this season. I'm really proud of her. Obviously, we miss Rachel, But it is what it is." - Stevenson senior Jenna Radtke about the season-ending injury suffered by Rachel Baader and the job Khaila Donaldson has done in her stead.
For the Cure: Naperville Central visits Wheaton Warrenville South on Monday, October 1 in a "Volley for the Cure" event. This has become one of the biggest cancer fundraisers of its kind, if not the biggest, in the state. The two teams raised more than $52,000 in 2011.
It's all in the family: Immaculate Conception has two sets of sisters - the Martinos (Kim and Liz) and the Manions (Rory and Molly). Delaney D'Amore is the daughter of Jean Field's assistant coach, Nancy D'Amore, who played in IC's 1984 state championship team. Six of the eight players on the team are children of alumni. One of the other two players had aunts and uncles who attended IC. The Martinos are from a long line of Martino setters -- Jessica Clifford (2004), Jennifer Clifford (2001), Kathy Clifford (1999), Michelle Martino (1990) and Cheryl Martino Butler (1981).
Prepvolleyball.com rankings: These are bound to undergo a shakeup after Marist's victory over McAuley, but in the rankings released last week by Prepvolleyball.com Mother McAuley was ranked No. 10 in the nation. Other ranked Illinois teams include No. 36. Benet Academy, No. 51 Champaign Centennial, No. 52 St. Francis, No. 74 Quincy and No. 83 Marist. Teams on the bubble are Breese Mater Dei, Edwardsville, Glenbard West, Hinsdale South, Joliet Catholic, Libertyville, Lincoln-Way East, Nazareth, New Trier, Normal Community, University (Normal), West Aurora
Will the south do it again?: Champaign Centennial, which won the Effingham Crossroads Classic and is a favorite in Class 3A, is led by 6-foot-3 middle blocker Lauren Cloyd (Rutgers), 6-foot middle Rachel Jones (Bradley) and 5-9 opposite Kelsey Olion (Western Missouri).
Commitment: West Aurora's Peyton McKenzie has verbally committed to St. Joseph College in Indiana.