In the final week of conference play, Wisconsin split matches, winning against Iowa in four and falling to Minnesota in five.
Wisconsin vs Iowa
In the Badgers last home game of the season, the team celebrated their seniors, Lauren Carlini, Tori Blake, Romana Kriskova and Haleigh Nelson.
The Badgers took down the Hawkeyes steadily of scores of 25-15, 22-25, 25-16, 25-7. Carlini handed out a match-best 57 assists in the four set win.
The first set began with a Wisconsin 13-7 lead over Iowa. The Hawkeyes couldn’t close the gap in the set, after another 6-2 run by the Badgers. The Hawks fought back but were unable to catch up. Wisconsin took the first set 25-15.
The second set was different, Iowa put up a fight, maintaining the lead for the majority of the set. Wisconsin didn’t give up, coming within one at 22-21, but couldn’t hold on dropping the second 22-25.
In the third and fourth sets, the game was all Wisconsin. The Badgers took the third set 25-16, while the fourth was a brutal beat down. The Badgers took a quick 14-1 advantage on 12 consecutive serves from Amber MacDonald. Iowa surged back slightly, but Wisconsin took them down at 25-7 in the fourth.
Wisconsin vs Minnesota
A battle between No. 3 and No. 2 was a five set showdown.
Wisconsin jumped out to the quick 1-0 lead over Minnesota as they grabbed the first set 25-22. The Badgers jumped out to a quick 12-9 lead on the Gophers in the first, but Minnesota went on a 6-2 run. Wisconsin regained the lead at 15-14, and a back and forth battle led to the Badgers first set victory.
The second set featured 11 ties up to 16-16, when Minnesota pulled away on a 9-1 run to end the second at 25-17. This tying the match up at 1-1.
Wisconsin responded to the second set loss with a commanding third set victory of 25-11, holding Minnesota to their lowest scored set of the season.
Up 2-1 entering the fourth, the Badgers looked to end that match in four. Minnesota had another plan, taking a 13-9 lead over the Badgers. Despite the effort from the Badgers, they couldn’t hold on dropping the set 25-17.
All tied up at 2-2, they entered the fifth and deciding set, looking to secure a victory over the No. 2 team before Selection Sunday. Down by only two at 6-4, the Badgers couldn’t hold on, dropping the match on a Minnesota 9-4 run at 15-8.
Watch the Badgers look to make a run at the NCCA National title with their first match against Howard University at home December 1 at 7:30 pm.