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Fourteen of the 20 spots in the SBLive California Top 20 girls volleyball rankings are filled with with teams from the Southern Section and the San Diego Section. 

Here's a look around four other sections (look for four more next week). All records through Tuesday.

Northern Section

Defending champions: Pleasant Valley-Chico (D2), West Valley-Cottonwood (D3), University Prep-Redding (D4), East Nicolaus (D5), Fall River (D6)

Top four in 2022: University Prep, Foothill-Palo Cedro, Willows, West Valley

  • University Prep (18-3): The Panthers are led by outside hitter Kaitlyn Cabral, with an impressive 5.0 kills per set and a .423 attack percentage. All of the team’s losses are to schools outside the section.
  • Foothill (19-3): The Cougars reached the NS final last year. They have a diverse attack this season behind Grace McQuoid, Kylee Wilson and Jordyn Woodward. Two of the losses are to University Prep.
  • Willows (22-5): Connie Huffman and Billie Throm lead the Honkers, who have won 19 of their last 20.
  • West Valley (13-4): The Eagles are led by Emerie Brown and Mya Thomas. Challenge awaits in the Northern Volleyball League as they will battle University Prep in early October.

North Coast Section

Defending champions: Monte Vista-Danville (D1), Marin Catholic-Kentfield (D2), Branson-Ross (D3), Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa (D4), Convent of the Sacred Heart-San Francisco (D5), Anderson Valley (D6)

Monte Vista posing after winning the Tiger Cup tourney. Photo: Monte Vista athletics.

Monte Vista posing after winning the Tiger Cup tourney. Photo: Monte Vista athletics.

Top four in 2022: Monte Vista, Foothill-Pleasanton, Amador Valley-Pleasanton, San Ramon Valley-Danville

  • Monte Vista (15-1); Last year, the Mustangs beat San Ramon Valley and Amador Valley to capture the NCS crown. This year, the Mustangs have a leg up in the competitive East Bay Athletic League as the only team unblemished in league play.
  • Foothill (15-3): The Falcons are on the rise. Only defeats are once in five sets, and twice in the third set of best-of-three tourney matches.
  • Amador Valley (7-1): The Dons are led by outside hitter Madison May and middle blocker Charlotte Kelly. Kelly is on fire with a .536 attack percentage.
  • San Ramon Valley (13-2): The Wolves are led by Audrey Ross with 4.3 kills per set.

Central Coast Section

Defending champions: Archbishop Mitty-San Jose (Open), Menlo-Atherton (D1), Branham-San Jose (D2), Burlingame (D3), Soquel (D4), Castilleja (D5)

Top four in 2022: St. Francis-Mountain View, Archbishop Mitty, Burlingame, Sacred Heart Prep-Atherton

  • St. Francis (12-0): St. Francis pulled off a monumental 5-set upset of top-seeded Marin Catholic in last year’s NorCal quarterfinals and reached the NorCal final, where they lost to Mitty in four sets. This year, the Lancers, led by Erin Curtis with 4.1 kills per set, are unbeaten and have not dropped a set against stiff local competition.

  • Mitty (17-4): Led by Audrey Liddle, Mitty only has defeats to state-ranked powerhouses Cathedral Catholic, Mater Dei, Redondo Union and St. Francis. The Monarchs won CCS and NorCal titles last year to head to the CIF State championships for their state-leading 19th appearance.
  • Burlingame (10-2): The Panthers will be looking to win the Peninsula Athletic League, Bay Division. Top competition will come from NorCal Division I defending champion Hillsdale-San Mateo.
  • Sacred Heart Prep (8-4): The Gators have only lost to local giants St. Francis, Mitty (twice) and Burlingame. They will be looking to take the West Bay Athletic League, Foothill Division title and already have a win over rival and neighbor Menlo School, who reached the NorCal Open Division final last year but has been hit hard by graduation.

San Francisco Section

Defending champion: Lowell

Top two in 2022: Lowell, Balboa

  • Lowell (9-7): Cardinals have a schedule full of tough CCS competition. In San Francisco’s Academic Athletic Association, they are 4-0.
  • Balboa: (6-3) The Buccaneers lost the SFS title match last year in four sets and appear to be the only strong challenger to Lowell again. Balboa also plays a solid schedule involving teams from other sections.

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