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UND volleyball expects tough tests in Green Bay

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UND volleyball coach Mark Pryor knows there is not a lot of comparison between the competition at last weekend's UND Classic and this weekend's Green Bay Country Inn and Suites Invitational.

Pryor was asked of his assessment of the Fighting Hawks' clean sweep through George Washington, Appalachian State and South Dakota State.

"These are the matches we're supposed to win," he said. "We took care of business. It was workmanlike. I think the kids had the right mental attitude. Let's get this done and try to finish in three as much as possible."

That will be a far greater challenge this weekend as UND takes a nine-match winning streak up against Cal Poly and Wisconsin-Green Bay.

UND, which leads the NCAA in wins with 13, is now ranked No. 11 in the latest VolleyballMag.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll. Cal Poly is No. 4.

Cal Poly is ranked just outside the Top 25 in the AVCA Top 25 poll. The Mustangs are No. 26 based on votes received.

The Mustangs are led by Torrey Van Winden, a former all-Pac 12 player at UCLA, who transferred to Poly to play with her sister Adlee Van Winden.

Torrey, the Big West Conference player of the week two weeks running, recently had a career-high 30 kills in a five-set win over Wichita State.

"That's the worst family reunion I've ever seen," Pryor said. "They're averaging more than 10 kills per set. That's going to be tough."

UND was swept last year by Green Bay at a tournament in Minneapolis.

"They're good," Pryor said. "They embarrassed us last year. It was one of the worst matches we had. The kids have a bad taste in their mouth, and I'm like, 'good.'

"For us, it's important that those programs in the Horizon, Missouri Valley and Summit ... it's important we end up winning against those teams."

Following the UND Classic, led by tournament most valuable player Ashley Brueggeman, UND has now had seven different players named to all-tournament teams and three different players selected as MVPs.

The tournament in Green Bay is UND's last test before Big Sky Conference play begins Sept. 21 with a road trip to Southern Utah and Northern Colorado.

Tom Miller

Miller has been with the Grand Forks Herald sports department for the past 13 years. He's also a Grand Forks native and UND graduate. 

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