Softball: Badgers claim first Big Ten title in school history

The best season in school history wasn't complete—not yet. 

Coming off a 9-3 upset win over No. 8 Michigan Saturday to advance to the Big Ten championship game Sunday, the Badger softball team (16-7 Big Ten, 42-11 overall) had one last chance to cement this season in the history books. 

With another 9-3 win over the Gophers (14-6, 45-17) Sunday in Lincoln, Neb., Wisconsin did just that, claiming its first-ever Big Ten title and putting a cherry on top of the best record in school history. 

Junior pitcher Cassandra Darrah was named tournament MVP after pitching consecutive victories, allowing only six runs on eight hits through 14 innings. 

Darrah joined freshman third baseman Stefanni LaJeunesse and sophomore outfielder Maria Van Abel on the all-tournament team.

Minnesota drew first blood in the third inning after a pair of scoreless frames, going up 2-0 on a leadoff walk followed by a home run from Minnesota sophomore infielder Tyler Walker.

Wisconsin tied things back up in the bottom of the inning and added five more runs in the fourth, leaving the score at 7-2.

A pair of UW errors and a hit gave Minnesota another run in the sixth inning, but the Badgers retaliated with two in the bottom of the set, putting Wisconsin up 9-3.

After a scoreless seventh inning, the celebrations could finally start.

With the win, UW claimed a berth in the NCAA tournament and is slated to play North Carolina in the first round Thursday in Eugene, Ore.

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