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9 MVC teams listed in first state volleyball rankings

Prep volleyball: Johnston, Heelan, DNH, Western, Janesville open at No. 1

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The initial state volleyball rankings feature nine teams from the Mississippi Valley Conference.

Led by third-ranked Iowa City West and No. 4 Cedar Falls, seven MVC teams are among the top 15 in Class 5A in the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union’s preseason list, released Monday.

The top-ranked teams are Johnston (5A), Sioux City Heelan (4A), Dike-New Hartford (3A), Western Christian (2A) and Janesville (1A).

Western Christian and Janesville are defending state champions.

Johnston received the nod over defending-champ Ankeny Centennial in 5A. The Dragons bring back six starters, led by 6-foot-3 Taryn Knuth (3.31 kills per set).

West (seven starters back) and Cedar Falls (four) start the MVC parade. Dubuque Hempstead is sixth, Cedar Rapids Kennedy eighth, Linn-Mar 13th, Cedar Rapids Jefferson 14th and Iowa City High 15th.

Defending 4A champion West Delaware has moved to 3A, and Heelan (a semifinalist last year) has the most returning of the remaining contenders — five starters. Pella is No. 2 in 4A, followed by Marion. Dubuque Wahlert and Cedar Rapids Xavier are seventh and 12th, rounding out the MVC barrage.

Dike-New Hartford edges Mount Vernon for the top sppot in 3A. The Wolverines were 2A semifinalists last year; Mount Vernon advanced to the 3A semis and brings back three all-state selections. Union and West Delaware are fourth and fifth

Western Christian has four starters back and is expected to reload around them. The Wolfpack beat Sumner-Fredericksburg in the 2A final last year, and start the new season 1-2. North Cedar is No. 4.

Iowa Star Conference rivals Janesville and Tripoli both are 1A giants, and are the top two teams in the small-school class. Springville starts at No. 3, Iowa Valley at No. 5.

The season starts for MVC teams — and some others — Tuesday.

CLASS 5A

1. Johnston (29-11)

2. Ankeny Centennial (39-5)

3. Iowa City West (27-12)

4. Cedar Falls (37-5)

5. West Des Moines Valley (42-10)

6. Dubuque Hempstead (25-11)

7. Ankeny (25-15)

8. Cedar Rapids Kennedy (29-10)

9. Bettendorf (33-2)

10. West Des Moines Dowling (42-6)

11. Urbandale (23-18)

12. Des Moines Roosevelt (29-17)

13. Linn-Mar (28-9)

14. Cedar Rapids Jefferson (16-21)

15. Iowa City High (17-16)

CLASS 4A

1. Sioux City Heelan (31-4)

2. Pella (27-11)

3. Marion (31-9)

4. Charles City (30-11)

5. Sergeant Bluff-Luton (35-12)

6. Harlan (37-6)

7. Dubuque Wahlert (20-15)

8. Waverly-Shell Rock (42-10)

9. Western Dubuque (24-13)

10. Fairfield (33-4)

11. Nevada (33-9)

12. Cedar Rapids Xavier (15-22)

13. Lewis Central (33-6)

14. Fort Madison (18-18)

15. Norwalk (26-11)

CLASS 3A

1. Dike-New Hartford (37-9)

2. Mount Vernon (26-12)

3. Carroll Kuemper (29-4)

4. Union (27-14)

5. West Delaware (49-2)

6. Sioux Center (31-6)

7. Davenport Assumption (23-13)

8. Spirit Lake (34-7)

9. Gilbert (27-11)

10. Center Point-Urbana (31-8)

11. North Polk (26-12)

12. Humboldt (28-5)

13. Cherokee (21-13)

14. West Liberty (37-5)

15. Eddyville EBF (35-3)

CLASS 2A

1. Western Christian (43-5)

2. Sumner-Fredericksburg (31-4)

3. Unity Christian (36-5)

4. North Cedar (30-11)

5. Tri-Center (29-4)

6. Lake Mills (40-2)

7. Treynor (26-9)

8. Woodward-Granger (29-9)

9. Central Lyon (32-5)

10. Council Bluffs St. Albert (23-7)

11. Hinton (25-12)

12. Montezuma (22-7)

13. Cascade (19-15)

14. Waterloo Columbus (20-15)

15. Underwood (22-11)

CLASS 1A

1. Janesville (28-14)

2. Tripoli (24-15)

3. Springville (31-7)

4. LeMars Gehlen (29-11)

5. Iowa Valley (25-9)

6. New London (36-7)

7. Grand View Christian (30-12)

8. Bellevue Marquette (22-8)

9. Fort Madison Holy Triniity (30-11)

10. Lawton-Bronson (32-6)

11. George-Little Rock (20-13)

12. Starmont (30-10)

13. Siouxland Christian (24-11)

14. Sidney (34-2)

15. Stanton (22-16)

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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