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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Press conference: Wisconsin gears up for spring game, other competitions

Football

The football team played an open practice for fans yesterday and will wrap up spring practice by playing their annual spring game Saturday April 20.

Head coach Gary Andersen expressed his desire to see as many fans as possible for the upcoming spring game. “We'll make it fun and entertaining for everybody that's out there,” Andersen said. “Everybody that can come, we'd love to have them come and be part of it, I know that much.”

Andersen also identified redshirt junior Dallas Lewallen and redshirt sophomore Ray Ball as stand-outs along the offensive line and noted the progressions made by the entire group throughout spring practice. “Those kids have done a good job of keeping their head up, not making excuses, and battling through it.“

Softball

The softball team will play their home opener against UW-Green Bay on Tuesday, finishing a 37 game stretch on the road.

Head coach Yvette Healy lauded the warming weather and was excited to begin a long homestand. “It's nice to see the lakes melting. I'm sure the ice fishermen aren't happy, but the softball team is thrilled to be back in Madison, and we're excited to get seven in a row home right now. So that's our focus.“

Healy later noted the advantages of more home games later in the season, stating “I think we might be a sleeper right now. We're kind of under the radar, and that's where we like to be. We've been an underdog team.

Men's Golf

The men's golf team will compete in the Big Ten Championships April 26 through April 28. The team is coming off an eighth place finish at the Hawkeye Invitational.

Head coach Michael Burcin credited the teams facilities for its help in preparing the team for the wet conditions they have experienced, praising the new 11,000 square foot practice facility.

“Couple that with the golf course and our short game area, we've got top five facilities in the nation. So that makes things a lot easier.“

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Burcin also commented on the recent Masters tournament, explaining how he uses its participants as a teaching point. “Those guys don't hit it as well as you think they can or do, but they chip and putt it unbelievably, and that's what saves them.“

Women's Golf

The women's golf team will compete in the Lady Buckeye Invitational this weekend, their last tournament before the Big Ten Championships at the French Lick golf course.

Head coach Chris Oehrlein took time to preview the championships at French Lick, noting the parity of the event. “Probably six teams down there that realistically can compete. There's certainly the favorite and those types of things, but there's a little more depth. It's been a great league this year. There's been a lot of balance.“

Oehrlein also took time to discuss the Masters, particularly the Tiger Woods ball drop controversy. Unlike Burcin, who believed Woods should have been disqualified because he felt he deliberately sought an advantage, Oehrlein thought since the rules official initially said it was okay to play and that should have stayed the ruling.

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