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Badgers conclude strong season with shutout win over Ohio State


ON WISCONSIN
ON WISCONSIN

ON WISCONSIN

May 14, 2011

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  Wisconsin 8,  Ohio State 0 (6 inn.)
Goodman Diamond • Madison, Wis.
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 Ohio State
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 Wisconsin
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 Pitchers
IP H R ER BB SO
W
McIntosh (10-9) 3.0
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L Goodchild (1-2) 3.1
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 Batting Leaders
 • Jennifer Krueger: 1-3, 2 RBI, SF
 • Ashley Hanewich: 1-1, 2 RBI, R, BB, HBP, SB
 • Mary Massei: 2-3, RBI, R, BB
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MADISON, Wis. -- The Wisconsin softball team closed out its best season since 2005 with a dominant performance over Ohio State on Saturday at Goodman Diamond.

A six-run third inning propelled the Badgers to an 8-0, six-inning win over the Buckeyes (14-37, 3-17). In the field, Wisconsin tied a school record with three double plays turned en route to finishing the year with a 30-23 record overall and a 9-11 mark in conference play.

The Badgers reached the 30-win plateau for the sixth time in school history and the first since winning 31 games in 2005.

In addition, with the win the Badgers went 4-3 in the month of May. After posting winning records in February, March and April, this marks just the second time in school history that the team finished each month with a record above .500.

 Fast Facts
• Badgers record winningest season since 2005
• Krueger sets UW single-season hit record
• UW gets consecutive run-rule wins for first time since 2007

A two-out rally in the second inning gave Wisconsin the early lead.

Whitney Massey drew a two-out walk before Ashley Hanewich was hit by a pitch. Dana Rasmussen then walked to load the bases, bringing up senior Jennifer Krueger who slapped a grounder to first base. Evelyn Carrillo made a diving stop, but had no chance to throw out the speedy Krueger.

With the single, Krueger recorded her 64th hit of the season to set the Wisconsin single-season record.

Like in Friday night's 11-3, six-inning win, the Badgers used a six-run inning to break the game open.

In the third inning, Wisconsin sent 10 batters to the plate to push the lead to 7-0.

Three straight walks to Karla Powell, Stephanie Peace and Shannel Blackshear loaded the bases with no outs. Michelle Mueller then pulled a single through the left side to score Abby Gregory, who pinch ran for Powell and stole a base.

After a strikeout, senior Ashley lined a shot off third baseman Megan Coletta's glove to bring home Peace and Venessa Nunez, who was running for Blackshear. With runners on second and third, Mueller got caught in a rundown between third and home, but Coletta was unable to cleanly field the throw and Mueller was able to come home with the sixth run of the game. Hanewich took third on the miscue and then came in to score on Krueger's sacrifice fly, which came after a bunt single by senior Dana Rasmussen.

The fourth and fifth innings passed without a run before Wisconsin took home its second run-rule win of the year in the sixth.

Massei led off the inning with a single before Powell singled through the left side to put two runners on. Peace was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Blackshear brought home the winning run as she lined a shot off Coletta's glove at third. Despite getting the out at third, there was no chance to throw out Massei, who scored the game-winning run.

Meghan McIntosh earned the win as she pitched three innings of relief. In improving to 10-9, McIntosh gave up just two hits and one walk while striking out three.

Cassandra Darrah started the game and pitched the first three innings. She also gave up just two hits and walked one, while recording one strikeout.

Both pitchers were helped by strong defense.

In the first inning, the Buckeyes put a pair of runners on but Blackshear fielded a grounder at third, stepped on the bag and then threw to first for a double play.

An inning later, the Badgers turned another twin-killing.  Brittany Goodchild hit a one-out single to center field, but she was doubled off first a batter later as Krueger made a sliding catch from center field and threw back from the seat of her pants to get the second out on the play.

In the fourth inning, Alicia Herron singled to lead off the frame but Carrillo followed with a grounder to second base. Mueller fielded the grounder, tagged Herron and then threw to first to pick up the Badgers' third double play of the game. That ties the school record that was set against Texas Tech on Feb. 20, 2009.

After winning 20 games a year ago, the Badgers' 30-win season in 2011 ties for the second-biggest win improvement in school history.

Coupled with their run-rule win on Friday night, the Badgers' recorded back-to-back run-rule wins for the first time since 2007 when they beat Northern Colorado, 17-0, on Feb. 23 and Buffalo, 13-3, on Feb. 24. Both games ended in five innings.

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