Look who’s No. 1 again.
For the first time since winning a national title in 2005, the Washington volleyball team is ranked No. 1 in the weekly American Volleyball Coaches Association poll.
The 10-0 Huskies, one of four Division I teams still unbeaten, received 38 of 60 first-place votes in the poll released Monday. Last week’s top-ranked team, Penn State, slipped to No. 5 after losing 3-2 to then-No. 15 Michigan State on Friday. USC, Florida and defending national champion Texas follow UW.
In 2004, Washington held the No. 1 spot for seven straight weeks before finishing at No. 3. Washington has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the 2006, 2011 and 2012 seasons.
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Washington coach Jim McLaughlin, who does not to vote in the poll, views the ranking as an interesting footnote but not much else.
“It doesn’t change any of our process of how we train,” McLaughlin said. “We still have to improve. Each player on this team has to make the plays that they need to make.”
The Huskies did so Friday at Oregon. Facing the 21st-ranked Ducks in front of a noisy crowd of 4,668 (third highest in UO history), UW regrouped after a tough 31-29 loss in the third set and, leading 2-1 overall, pummeled Oregon 25-8 in the fourth set to finish off an impressive win.
• Junior outside hitter Krista Vansant, a former national prep player of the year, recorded 30 kills (plus seven digs and five blocks) in wins over Washington State and Oregon in the first week of Pac-12 play. She was named the conference offensive player of the week for the second straight week.
• The Huskies play at Colorado and Utah this weekend before hosting Arizona in their Pac-12 home opener Oct. 11.