Plenty has occurred since’s last National High School Rankings. There have been major tournaments with mixed up results creating havoc. The hottest debate takes place at the very top, as in who is No. 1?

Padua Franciscan of Ohio defeated both Assumption of Kentucky and Mater Dei of California en route to capturing the Louisville Invitational Volleyball Tournament in September. With both Assumption and Mater Dei ranked in our top five at the time, Padua presented a strong case to take over the No. 1 spot. However, since then both Assumption and Mater Dei have completed their tournament portion of their schedules. Mater Dei wound up fifth at Durango and runner-up at the Nike TOC in Phoenix this past weekend. Assumption landed in seventh at Durango and fourth this past weekend at the Asics Challenge in Chicago.

That leaves the question of where to value Padua’s performance in Louisville and those victories over Mater Dei and Assumption? And if not Padua No. 1, then who?

Torrey Pines of California was No. 2 in our September rankings but was upset at Durango by Vista Murrieta of California in the quarterfinals.

However, Torrey Pines does own two victories over Durango champion Cathedral Catholic, as well as Redondo Union, both of California. Torrey Pines also avenged its’ only other loss by beating recently defeating La Costa Canyon of California after LCC beat Torrey Pines in the first meeting.

Also, considering Torrey Pines does own victories over schools who have won big tournaments – Redondo came in first at the Ann Kang Invitational in August — the top spot in the latest rankings goes to the Falcons.

Now, there is plenty of time left. Torrey Pines has a treacherous road ahead, where the Falcons are likely to see Cathedral Catholic once, if not twice, more. Torrey Pines could also see Redondo Union, Mater Dei or Marymount of California — which beat Mater Dei for the Nike TOC title — in the state playoffs.

As for the rest of the Top 50, 11 teams make their way into the rankings led by St. James Academy of Kansas, which checks in at No. 23. Hudsonville of Michigan also cracks the Top 25, debuting at No. 25.
(Our rankings include results through Tuesday, October 9)

1. Torrey Pines (San Diego, California)
Current Record: 21-2
Sept. Ranking: 2
In an imperfect world, the Falcons have as strong as case as anyone at this juncture. They own two victories over Durango Fall Classic champion Cathedral Catholic of California, as well as a victory over Redondo Union of California. Though a short-handed Redondo Union didn’t post strong results at Durango, the Sea Hawks own a victory over Marymount of California, which just captured gold at the Nike TOC in Phoenix. On the flip side, Torrey Pines has two losses to unranked opponents in Vista Murrieta and La Costa Canyon, both of California. Torrey Pines did defeat LCC in the most recent meeting between the teams, helping to avenge the earlier loss. Torrey Pines heads into the weekend as the top seed in the Southern California Invitational.
2. Redondo Union (Redondo Beach, California)
Current Record: 26-3
Sept Ranking: 3
The Sea Hawks are looking to end the season strong, as they will have their full lineup down the stretch. The team spent the early part of the season playing without junior setter Kami Miner and then without Miner and senior libero Nalani Iosia at Durango. The Sea Hawks have also missed junior outside Ava Kirunckyk, who is representing the USA at the FIVB beach championships. Redondo visits Palos Verdes of California in a league match Thursday before hosting its own tournament, the Redondo Beach Invitational, this weekend.
3. Padua Franciscan (Parma, Ohio)
Current Record: 21-0
Sept. Ranking: 21
The Bruins elevated themselves quickly by winning last month’s Louisville Invitational Volleyball Tournament, which included victories over Assumption of Kentucky and Mater Dei of California. After pasting a tough test by sweeping nationally-ranked St. Ursula Academy to close out last month, the Bruins remain undefeated and hadn’t dropped a set since dropping one to Assumption in the finals of the LIVT until Wednesday. That’s when the Bruins escaped over Independence of Ohio in five games 17-25, 23-25, 25-12, 25-10, 15-4.
4. Benet Academy (Lisle, Illinois)
Current Record: 24-0
Sept. Ranking: 16
The Redwings make the climb up the rankings and into the Top 5 on the strength of their undefeated record. It featured a victory over Marist of Chicago, which took first place this past weekend at the Asics Challenge in Chicago. In fact, Benet Academy hasn’t lost a set since beating Marist in three games on Sept. 21.
5. Byron Nelson (Trophy Club, Texas)
Current Record: 37-2
Sept. Ranking: 4
The Bobcats lost to Keller of Texas to start October, their first setback since falling to Redondo Union in the finals of the Ann Kang Invitational in Hawaii. However, Byron Nelson remains in the Top 5, as it has beat all the other top teams in Texas, and most without the services of junior outside Charitie Luper, who played backrow only in the loss to Keller. Luper sent down nine kills in a sweep over Guyer on Tuesday, as she’s back to six-rotation duties.
6. Mercy (Farmington Hills, Michigan)
Current Record: 33-1
Sept. Ranking: 6
Mercy’s first loss and only loss came back in September in a sweep to Lowell of Michigan. The Marlins played that match without senior outside Jess Mruzik, who was recently named the MVP of the U19 FIVB World Championships in Egypt. Mruzik recorded 21 kills in Mercy’s sweep of Marian of Michigan on Tuesday.
7. Eagan (Eagan, Minnesota)
Current Record: 18-0
Sept. Ranking: 18
Unlike some other teams, the Wildcats survived the absence of their USA Youth National team member in junior Kennedi Orr and remain unbeaten. Eagan did have to put in work in a recent five-set victory over Lakeville North of Minnesota to keep it that way.
8. Marymount (Los Angeles, California)
Current Record: 28-3
Sept. Ranking: 8
The Sailors came up large over the weekend, defeating Mater Dei 25-21, 25-23, 15-10, in the final of the Nike TOC. It was the second straight season Marymount downed Mater Dei in the final of the event. Along the way, Marymount topped Cathedral Catholic in the quarterfinals for a big victory over the Durango champions. Taking home the tournament title helped the Sailors put an Day 1 loss to Corona del Sol of Arizona to rest. Redondo Union and Mercy of Kentucky are the only other teams to defeat Marymount.
9. Cathedral Catholic (San Diego, California)
Current Record: 24-4
Sept. Ranking: 17
Last month, Cathedral Catholic claimed the prestigious Durango Fall Classic championship for the first time. The Dons headed to Phoenix for the Nike TOC this past weekend but couldn’t double-up there. Instead, the Dons fell to Marymount in the quarterfinals.
10. Papillion-La Vista (Papillion, Nebraska)
Current Record: 26-0
Sept. Ranking: 10
The Monarchs push into the Top 10 with an unblemished mark. An earlier victory over Skutt Catholic of Nebraska looks better and better as Skutt Catholic climbs up the rankings as well.
11. Flower Mound (Texas)
Current Record: 31-3
Sept. Ranking: 10
The Jaguars are riding a 21-match winning streak since last losing to Plano West on Aug. 20. Flower Mound has swept its past five contests.
12. Mater Dei (Santa Ana, California)
Current Record: 25-4
Sept. Ranking: 5
Mater Dei’s loss to Marymount in the quarterfinals at Durango was an upset at the time. But with Marymount beating Mater Dei in the final of the Nike TOC, following Marymount defeating Cathedral Catholic, the Monarchs don’t slide down the rankings too much, but do drop out of the Top 10. Mater Dei has one remaining match before starting the postseason.
13. Marist (Chicago, Illinois)
Current Record: 23-2
Sept. Ranking: 7
Winners of the Asics Challenge over the weekend, Marist has a loss to unranked Carmel of Indiana on its record but its only other setback came to nationally-ranked Benet Academy. Marist downed Skutt Catholic to captured the tournament title.
14. Skutt Catholic (Omaha, Nebraska)
Current Record: 19-4
Sept. Ranking: 24
The Skyhawks were one of those teams impacted by the Youth National Team playing in Egypt, as they missed junior outside Lindsay Krause. She’s back and Skutt looks to be on track after taking second place by falling to Marist in the final of the Asics Challenge this past weekend. The Skyhawks did pick up a victory over Assumption.
15. Assumption (Louisville, Kentucky)
Current Record: 26-7
Sept. Ranking: 1
It’s been a tough go for the Rockets since winning the Avon Invitational. Though they defeated Mercy of Kentucky in a rivalry match – the sides play again Thursday – injuries have taken a toll. Assumption played all of Durango without senior middle blocker Rylee Rader, who has been out since the LIVT, and all but one match without senior outside Anna DeBeer. While DeBeer has since returned, Assumption played the Asics Challenge still missing Rader. Assumption lost twice to Mother McAuley of Illinois over the weekend, once in non-league action and once in tournament play, and another time to Skutt Catholic.
16. New Castle (Indiana)
Current Record: 27-1
Sept. Ranking: 14
Going down to Assumption at the Avon Invitational remains New Castle’s only blemish. Since that time, the Trojans picked up a sweep over nationally-ranked Providence of Indiana, the Trojans’ biggest test since facing the Rockets. New Castle opens the postseason next week.
17. Green Hope (Cary, North Carolina)
Current Record: 18-2
Pre-Season Ranking: 28
The Falcons have held firm, with their only two defeats coming to Mater Dei and Assumption at the LIVT, where Green Hope defeated nationally-ranked St. Ursula Academy of Ohio. Junior Annie Elvin and senior Alexis Engelbrecht combined for 27 kills in the team’s latest victory, a sweep over Athens Drive on Tuesday.
18. Mount Notre Dame (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Current Record: 19-2
Sept. Ranking: 41
It’s been a recent run for Mount Notre Dame, which has earned impressive victories over Mercy of Kentucky and Ursuline Academy of Ohio. Ursuline defeated Mount Notre Dame in September action, but MND rode 27 kills from sophomore outside Carly Hendrickson to win last week’s rematch. Hendrickson had 25 kills in MND’s victory over Mercy. MND’s only other loss came to St. Ursula Academy, a squad MND has defeated twice.
19. The Woodlands (Texas)
Current Record: 38-3
Sept. Ranking: 11
The Highlanders lost just twice in the month of August and were upset by Klein of Texas for their only defeat in September. The rematch between the teams comes next week, on Oct. 15.
20. Providence (Clarksville, Indiana)
Current Record: 24-1
Sept Ranking: 15
The Pioneers are having a terrific season, having only lost to New Castle. Since then, Providence has swept five consecutive outings. The Pioneers also being the postseason next week.
21. Mercy (Louisville, Kentucky)
Current Record: 25-5
Sept. Ranking: 23
The Jaguars have a rematch against rival Assumption on Thursday. Mercy has been busy since the first time playing the Rockets. They finished runner-up to Cathedral Catholic at the Durango Fall Classic and played Ohio powers Ursuline Academy and Mount Notre Dame back-to-back the following Saturday.
22. Plano West (Plano, Texas)
Current Record: 28-5
Sept. Ranking: 9
The Wolves were upset by Prosper of Texas at the end of September and fell in the rankings as a result. Plano West bounced back with sweeps over Plano East and Allen, both of Texas, and face Plano of Texas for a second time this season Friday.
23. St. James Academy (Lenexa, Kansas)
Current Record: 23-1
Sept. Ranking: N/R
The Thunder finished in first place at this past weekend’s Blue Springs South Tournament, topping surprise Nixa of Missouri in the final. St. James suffered its first loss, going down to St. Thomas Aquinas of Kansas on Saturday. St. James had defeated Aquinas two days prior.
24. Ursuline Academy (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Current Record: 17-3
Sept. Ranking: 13
The Lions’ first loss came against St. Ursula, an opponent the Lions got revenge against at the end of September. However, Ursuline lost to Mercy of Kentucky to end the month and then last week fell to Mount Notre Dame in five games after sweeping MND in the first meeting. Senior right side Emma Gielas and junior middle Hailey Green teamed for 35 kills in the recent setback to MND.
25. Hudsonville (Michigan)
Current record: 35-2
Sept. Ranking: N/R
The teams to beat Hudsonville have also lost to the Eagles. Hudsonville is 1-1 on the season with Lowell of Michigan, the only team to beat sixth-ranked Mercy of Michigan. The Eagles are also 2-1 against nationally-ranked Grand Rapids Christian of Michigan and thus break into the Top 25.
26. Cedar Falls (Iowa)
Current Record: 23-1, Sept. Ranking: 20
27. Nazareth Academy (LaGrange Park, Illinois)
Current Record: 15-4, Sept. Ranking: 26
28. Grand Rapids Christian (Michigan)
Current Record: 27-2, Sept. Ranking: N/R
29. Lovejoy (Lucas, Texas)
Current Record: 34-5, Sept. Ranking: 12
30. St. Ursula Academy (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Current Record: 17-5, Sept. Ranking: 44
31. Prosper (Texas)
Current Record: 19-7, Ranking: 30
32. Southlake Carroll (Carroll, Texas)
Current Record: 20-7, Sept. Ranking: 31
33. Arrowhead (Hartland, Wisconsin)
Current Record: 30-3, Sept. Ranking: 50
34. Punahou (Honolulu, Hawaii)
Current Record: 10-1, Sept. Ranking: N/R
35. Perry (Arizona)
Current Record: 19-2, Sept. Ranking: 36
36. Oconomowoc (Wisconsin)
Current Record: 30-2, Sept. Ranking: N/R
37. ‘Iolani (Honolulu, Hawaii)
Current Record: 18-8, Sept. Ranking: 40
38. Rampart (Colorado Springs, Colorado)
Current Record: 13-1, Sept. Ranking: 37
39. Marin Catholic (Kentfield, California)
Current Record: 20-3, Sept. Ranking: N/R
40. Lowell (Michigan)
Current Record: 30-2, Sept. Ranking: N/R
41. Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth, California)
Current Record: 30-2, Sept. Ranking: N/R
42. Cherokee Trail (Aurora, Colorado)
Current Record: 13-1, Sept. Ranking: 45
43. Kamehameha (Honolulu, Hawaii)
Current Record: 32-4, Sept. Ranking: N/R
44. Plainfield North (Plainfield, Illinois)
Current Record: 21-3, Sept. Ranking: N/R
45. Dawson (Pearland, Texas)
Current Record: 27-4, Sept. Ranking: 42
46. McIntosh (Peachtree City, Georgia)
Current Record: 30-1, Sept. Ranking: 48
47. Sequoyah (Canton, Georgia)
Current Record: 34-1, Sept. Ranking: 49
48. Sandburg (Orland Park, Illinois)
Current Record: 22-4, Sept. Ranking: 22
49. Chaparral (Parker, Colorado)
Current Record: 13-2, Sept. Ranking: N/R
50. Lake Highland Prep (Orlando, Florida)
Current Record: 17-2, Sept. Ranking: 25
In: 23 St. James Academy KS; 25 Hudsonville MI; 28 Grand Rapids Christian MI; 34 Punahou HI; 36 Oconomowoc WI; 39 Marin Catholic CA; 40 Lowell MI; 41 Sierra Canyon CA; 43 Kamehameha HI; 44 Plainfield North IL; 49 Chaparral CO
Out: 27 Cor Jesu Academy MO; 29 Althoff Catholic IL; 32 St. Teresa’s Academy MO; 33 Hagerty FL; 34 Sacred Heart KY; 35 St. Thomas Aquinas KS; 38 Brookfield Central WI; 39 Lansing KS; 43 Xavier Prep AZ; 46 Legend CO; 47 Alpharetta GA;

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