SOU football team falls to No. 7 in NAIA rankings
NAIA football top-25 voters made themselves clear Monday: Overcome one of the best homefield advantages in the nation, against the third-ranked team in the NAIA, or suffer the consequences.
Southern Oregon (6-1 overall) received that message in the form of a three-spot hit that put the Raiders at No. 7 in the aftermath of Saturday's 42-40 loss at No. 3 Carroll (Mont.), where the Saints have won 56 of their last 58. SOU defeated the Saints earlier this season in Ashland, 38-35, but never got past them in the rankings, making Saturday's outcome seemingly consistent with the previous top 25 in which SOU was No. 4.
Voters either did not agree with that last point, the two-point margin larger than what they believed to be acceptable, or the teams that jumped SOU made cases too compelling to ignore. Among those teams was Georgetown (Ky.), which lost two weeks ago at then-unranked Campbellsville and on Saturday won at home against Cumberlands (Ky.), a 1-5 team, to go from No. 9 to No. 6.
Carroll (5-1) held steady at third in the poll behind top-ranked Morningside (Iowa) and No. 2 Baker (Kan.), which are the only undefeated teams remaining.
Rocky Mountain (5-2), the only other Frontier Conference team left in the rankings, went from 15th to 13th. SOU hosts the Bears on Nov. 1 at Raider Stadium.
SOU is on the road this Saturday at fourth-place College of Idaho.
The Raiders remained second behind Carroll in the Hensley Ratings, a popular computer RPI whose consistent logic heavily favors strength of schedule.
Southern Oregon setter Lauren McGowne became the fifth Raider volleyball player this season to wear the title of Cascade Conference player of the week, the league office announced Monday.
McGowne, a sophomore from Coos Bay, got the honor for offense after posting 69 assists in six sets over the weekend and guiding the Raiders (17-3 overall, 11-1 CCC) to two sweeps. Her league-leading assist-per-set average of 11.4 went up by a small fraction, and she contributed nine digs.
McGowne hadn't previously won the award, but she was the Northwest Region freshman of the year in 2013, when she was second in CCC assists.
On Oct. 8 at Oregon Tech, she set a career-high with 59 assists in SOU's five-set win.
The Raiders, who dropped one spot to No. 11 in the NAIA Top 25 on Tuesday, have won seven straight heading into Friday and Saturday's home matches against Evergreen (7 p.m.) and Northwest (5 p.m.).
— SOU Sports Information