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Thursday, May 23, 2024
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Wisconsin softball defeats DePaul 11-1 at Goodman Softball Diamond on April 11, 2023 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Wisconsin softball wins first conference series against the Buckeyes

Wisconsin Badgers softball won their first conference series against the Ohio State Buckeyes at home.

The Wisconsin Badgers softball team took on the Ohio State Buckeyes at home on April 12-14, doubling their scores for the first two games before losing the third in an overall series win. 

First home victory 

The Badgers started their high-powered 8-4 win with top-of-the-lineup infielder Fiona Girardot drilling the ball to center. Still in the bottom of the first, catcher Emmy Wells took the plate for another solo homer to establish an early 2-0 lead.

Starting pitcher Tessa Magnanimo’s groove slipped in the third, giving up three runs and Wisconsin’s lead. However, the Badgers’ defense was clean for the rest of the game, including multiple double plays, with shortstop Ava Kuszak fashionably diving into the outfield to prevent another Buckeye hit. 

The Badgers tied the game 3-3 in the fourth when infielder Ellie Hubbard’s double drove outfielder Brooke Kuffel home, and Wisconsin got back on top soon after in the fifth. The five-run inning’s scoring kicked off with two outs when outfielder Peyton Bannon took the plate, bases loaded. Her single locked in two runners, followed by Kuffel’s launch that drove in three more. 

The Buckeyes got one more run in but could not compete with the Badgers’ eight runs, five of which were from the three home runs. 

Securing the series win 

Wisconsin won 10-5 Saturday, once again doubling Ohio State’s score. Wells hit another bomb in the first, this time a three-run homer to secure a 3-0 lead. Their supremacy increased to 4-0 in the third after a sacrifice fly.

Thanks to two Badger throwing errors, the Buckeyes scored two in the fourth and one in the fifth off relief pitcher Shelby Jacobson before Magnanimo took over the close 4-3 game. 

Just like the day before, the Badgers bounced back in the fifth to make it a six-run inning. Between Kuszak’s two-run smash hit, Bannon’s two-run RBI double, Hubbard’s RBI triple and outfielder Molly Schlosser’s RBI, the Badgers were unstoppable. 

Despite letting up a two-run home run from the Buckeyes in the seventh, the Badgers still wrapped up the first two games with 20 hits and a total score of 18-9. 

Defeated in the series finale 

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Wisconsin couldn’t keep up its success in Sunday's game, ultimately losing 9-5 after a series of errors. The Badgers led until the fifth, behind RBIs from Kuffel and Kuszak in the first. 

Kuszak continued her outburst of a series, hammering the ball for a solo homer in the third in a 3-1 rally. Both teams scored in the fourth, with Bannon representing the Badgers when she raced home after infielder Alivia Bark squeeze bunted. 

But it was the Buckeyes’ turn to secure the win with a six-run fifth inning that capitalized on errors and singles. The Badgers saw one more run — an RBI from Bannon — that only cut their deficit to 9-5. 

Now sitting at .395, Wisconsin will take the road to play Minnesota in a doubleheader on Wednesday, April 17th. 

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