Hawaii picked up two conference title-clinching victories last week. Today, The Rainbow Wahine picked up two weekly awards from the Big West as senior opposite Nikki Taylor and setter Norene Iosia repeated as Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week, respectively.
Taylor had a combined 37 kills with eight aces in the wins over Cal Poly and UC Santa Barbara, helping Hawaii (22-5, 15-1 earn the Big West title and give coach Dave Shoji his 1,200th career win. Against the Gauchos on Saturday, she had 22 kills and 11 digs for her sixth double-double of the season and exceeded the 20-kill mark for the seventh time this year.
Iosia had a combined 74 assists and 25 digs, her two double-doubles giving her 12 on the season. She is two assists shy of the 900 career mark.
Also today, Hawaii heads into its final week of the regular season with new rankings in both the NCAA Women’s Volleyball Ratings Percentage Index and the AVCA Coaches Top 25. The Wahine have a bye week and will learn their postseason fate on Sunday during the NCAA Selection Show.
Hawaii moved up eight places to 28 in the RPI and one spot to No. 13 in the poll.
Regaining the top spot in the computer-generated RPI was Wisconsin (24-3) followed by Texas (21-4), Nebraska (26-1) and Minnesota (23-4). All of the teams that beat Hawaii in the nonconference season are ahead of the Wahine in the RPI.
Besides the Badgers who won the season opener against the Hawaii, Washington (24-4) is at 11, UCLA (23-5) at 12 and Kansas State at 19. Long Beach, which handed Hawaii its lone conference loss, is at 79.
In the poll, defending national champion Nebraska remained the unanimous No. 1, receiving all 64 first-place votes. Also staying put were Minnesota at No. 2, Wisconsin at No. 3 and Kansas (25-2) at No. 4.
Rounding out the Top 10 were Texas, North Carolina (25-3), Washington, UCLA, Florida (24-3) and BYU (26-3).