The Northern State volleyball team moved up to No. 23 in the latest AVCA top-25 poll released Monday afternoon. The Wolves (18-3, 11-3 NSIC) were ranked 25th in last week's poll.
Northern is coming off a perfect 3-0 finish a week ago, as it picked up three sweeps over MSU Moorhead, Winona State and Upper Iowa. The Wolves now have 11 sweeps on the season and have won eight consecutive matches, which is their second-longest streak of the season (nine).
NSU was led last week by Kelsey Chambers' 52 kills (5.8 per set) and a .369 hitting percentage. Chambers tied a career-high with 23 kills and also hit .595 in Northern's win over UIU. Chambers also had 23 digs in the three matches.
Setter Drew Smith averaged 12.2 assists per set last week and also had 27 digs. Against Winona, Smith tallied her sixth double-double of the season as she had 35 assists and 15 digs in the win. Libero Sami Nygaard led the back row for Northern has she averaged over five digs per set last week, for a total of 46. Nygaard also tied a career-high twice with five assists each in the wins over WSU and UIU.
In all, five NSIC teams were ranked in the top-25 this week with Concordia-St. Paul taking the top spot once again. Minnesota Duluth is ranked third, Southwest Minnesota State is eighth and Wayne State is 18th. Augustana is receiving votes to be ranked.
Northern begins a tough stretch of four consecutive road matches this weekend as it travels to face Minnesota State Friday for a 7 p.m. match. Saturday is a showdown with No. 1 Concordia in a 4 p.m. contest.