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Kelli Browning was named BIG EAST Player of the Week on Monday.
Courtesy: Steven Branscombe

Browning Named Player of the Week As Volleyball Soars to Fifth in RPI

OMAHA, Neb. -- The Creighton Volleyball team jumped in the NCAA RPI and AVCA Top-25 polls while also seeing Kelli Browning honored as BIG EAST Player of the Week on Monday.

Creighton climbed two spots in the official RPI and are now up to fifth. The Bluejays (14-4, 5-1 BIG EAST) trail only national powers Texas, Penn State, Florida and USC, thanks in part to a strong record against a schedule deemed the nation's fourth-best. Rounding out the top-10 are Washington, Missouri, Stanford, Hawai'i and Kansas. Nebraska, whom Creighton has not played this fall, is No. 13 in the RPI. Creighton's next match will be at Marquette, which is No. 16 in the computerized rankings.

In this week's AVCA Top-25 Coaches Poll, Creighton is just outside the top-25 and first among those schools listed under "others receiving votes" with 63 points. Arizona is No. 25 in the poll with 89 points after sweeping both UCLA and previous No. 1 USC last weekend. Creighton owns two wins against teams in this week's poll, having defeated both No. 19 BYU and No. 22 Kansas.

Browning was named BIG EAST Player of the Week after helping Creighton to wins over Xavier and Butler last weekend, moving the Bluejays into first place in the BIG EAST standings for the first time. Browning led Creighton by averaging team-bests of 3.22 kills, 1.11 blocks and hit .420 on the weekend.  

Browning helped Creighton to a come-from-behind 3-2 win vs. Xavier on Friday night with 14 kills and five blocks on .458 hitting.  After CU lost the first set, Browning had five kills in as many swings during the second set. She would later add two kills and two blocks in the fifth set win, including a stuff to give CU a 12-11 lead it would never surrender. She concluded her weekend with a match-best 15 kills, tying a season-high, and adding a team-best five blocks in a 3-1 win over Butler in which she hit .385. Browning was also flawless in 14 service attempts after entering the week with just six serves all fall.

Creighton looks to grow its lead in the BIG EAST standings this weekend when it visits second-place Marquette (12-5, 4-1 BIG EAST) on Friday at 7 pm and travels to Chicago on Saturday for a 2:30 pm match vs. DePaul (15-4, 1-4 BIG EAST).
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