The Western Nebraska Community College volleyball team dropped out of the Top 5 in this week’s NJCAA national rankings, falling to No. 7 after going 4-1 at the WyoBraska Invite this past weekend.

Central Wyoming College, the team that defeated the Cougars in five sets on Saturday, made the biggest climb, jumping from No. 16 to No. 11 this week. Central Wyoming is 10-6 on the season.

WNCC, 17-3, will look to get back on the winning track this week when they have a busy week with three home matches beginning with Tuesday night when they host Casper College at 6 p.m.

After Tuesday, the Cougar women will begin sub-region play in home contests on Thursday and Friday with the games beginning at 6 p.m. On Thursday, the Cougars will battle McCook Community College while Lamar Community College comes to town on Friday.

Tuesday’s game with Casper will be the fourth time the two have met and the previous three were all sweeps. The first was in Casper, the second time in Sterling, Colorado, and the third time was Friday at the WyoBraska Invite. Casper is 3-18 so far this season, but have played a very difficult and competitive schedule against Top 20 ranked teams.

In the game on Friday, the first game with WNCC was close and then the next two weren’t. That game the Cougars hit .209 while Casper had a hitting percentage of .011.

The second time that the two played in Sterling, Colorado, it was a much closer match as WNCC won 25-14, 26-24, 25-18. That match WNCC hit .250 and Casper hit .038.

Thursday’s match will be tough as the Cougars open South Sub-region play. McCook enters Thursday with an 11-6 record. McCook had a six-match win streak before falling to Garden City Community College on Friday in straight sets. 

Friday’s sub-region match against Lamar Community College who is 1-11 on the season with their only win coming against Pratt Community College in five sets. Lamar has only won four sets all year in their 12 matches.

After this week, WNCC will have two matches the last week in September when they host Laramie County Community College on Tuesday, Sept. 27 and then travel to face Northeastern Junior College

As for WNCC players in the national statistic category, both Erica Fava and Jenna Curtis are in the Top 20 for most kills this season. Fava is 12th with 213 kills and Curtis is 17th with 206 kills. Fava and Curtis are among the leaders in total points, which is kills, blocks, and ace serves. Fava has 251 points which is 11th while Curtis has 244 points which is 17th.

Shanelle Martinez is third in the nation in total set assists with 700 at a 10.00 per set average., which is 10th in the country. 

Ale Meoni is also in the top 10 as she is tied for eighth in ace serves with 42.

Emmalei Mapu is also among the nation’s leaders as she is tied for 28th in solo blocks with 14. She also has 42 assist blocks with is 35th in the country.

In this week’s Top 5, the top four remain the same as Florida SouthWestern remains No. 1 at 12-0 followed by Indians Hills at 21-1. Snow College is third at 10-1 followed by Salt Lake at 15-2 and Miami Dade College moves into the Top 5 at number five with a 12-4 record. Utah State Eastern is sixth followed by WNCC. 

The remaining Top 10 has Trinity Valley at No. 8, New Mexico Military at No. 9, and Odessa College at No. 10.