Cyclones ranked No. 25 in latest volleyball poll

Senior Alexis Conaway celebrates after the cyclones score their 20th point of set thee Aug. 26. The cyclones went on to win the set. 

Trevor Holbrook

Iowa State volleyball has started its season on a high note.

After three sweeps in the Cyclone Invitational, the Cyclones have cracked the top-25 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association’s (AVCA) poll, squeaking in at No. 25.

“It’s definitely exciting to be ranked this early, and then just to continue to go up from here,” senior middle blocker Alexis Conaway said.

Collegiate volleyball features one ranking poll, unlike other sports. This week’s ranking marks the first appearance in the AVCA Top-25 since November 2013.

Conaway helped push Iowa State to a top-25 rank, along with fellow middle blocker Grace Lazard.

Lazard and Conaway were awarded co-MVPs after their dominant performances to start the season. The duo compiled more kills than anyone else on the team, combining for 49 total.

Even with the Cyclone’s hot start, Lazard was caught off guard with the ranking.

“I wasn’t expecting anything like [being ranked]. I always check the NCAA [rankings], and to see Iowa State at the bottom at No. 25, it’s amazing,” Lazard said.

Iowa State joins two other Big 12 schools in the AVCA rankings: Texas at No.4 and Kansas at No. 9. Baylor also received votes.

The Cyclones continue their quest to improve and climb in the rankings on Friday and Saturday at the Dayton Invitational.

Iowa State will enter with No. 25 next to its name, but Conaway spoke about the deceptiveness of rankings.

“It’s always nice to be recognized, but I think rankings only tell you so much,” Conaway said. “Any team you play, regardless of ranking, is going to be a good team.”