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Sports Covered: Softball, Track & Field

Softball

The Badgers ended two different parts of the 2012 season with a 3-2 record last week.

Wisconsin (33-17, 12-8 Big Ten) finished its nonconference schedule with mid-week wins over Bradley and Green Bay (doubleheader), but ended its home stand with two losses to No. 23 Michigan. 

The Badgers and Wolverines were supposed to play the last game of the series on Sunday, but it was cancelled due to inclement weather in the Madison area. Wisconsin is currently tied for fourth place in the Big Ten with Nebraska, which will host the Badgers next weekend. 

Junior Meghan McIntosh recorded her first shutout on the mound this season in UW's 2-0 win over the Bradley Braves (19-28). She allowed five hits in a complete game of work, while walking two and striking out four. Classmate Whitney Massey was a perfect 3-for-3 at bat in the win, adding a run and two doubles. Sophomore Stephanie Peace added an RBI double of her own to give UW the 2-0 lead.

The Badgers followed the shutout win with another one as part of a sweep of in-state rival Green Bay on Wednesday. Sophomore Cassandra Darrah got the shutout win against the Phoenix, allowing five hits while walking three and striking out seven. After four scoreless innings from both teams, the Badgers scored three runs in the fifth inning and one in the sixth to get the 4-0 win. Peace recorded 3 RBI in game one, while sophomore Mary Massei went 2-for-4 with a triple that kicked off the Badger offense. 

Wisconsin came from behind to get the win in the nightcap. After falling 2-0 early in the game, the Badgers scored five unanswered runs to get what was their 13th-straight home win (5-2). McIntosh got the win to improve to 7-5 this season, allowing five hits and two earned runs in six innings of work. Junior Amanda Najdek got her first save of the season, striking out two in the seventh inning. Junior Shannel Blackshear went a perfect 2-for-2 at bat, while adding a run and an RBI. 

Although both games were close, the Badgers were swept by No. 23 Michigan in a doubleheader on Saturday.

After two scoreless innings to start the first game, Michigan's Ashley Lane recorded a grand slam as part of a five-run third inning for the Wolverines. The Badgers were able to get on the board in the seventh inning but still lost, 5-1. Massey went 2-for-3 in game one, while Massei recorded UW's only RBI in the loss. Darrah recorded the loss, allowing five earned runs on six hits in only 2.1 innings of work. 

The second game saw Michigan jump out to a 3-0 lead before the Badgers scored four runs in the third to take what would be their only lead of the day at 4-3. U-M then scored a run in the next two innings to take the lead for good before adding two insurance runs in the top of the seventh. The Badgers did score a run of their own in the last frame of play, but it wasn't enough, as the Wolverines took the second game by a score of 7-5. Darrah took the loss as a relief pitcher, falling to 21-11 on the year. Massey led the offense with 3 RBI, while Stephanie Peace added two of her own with her 2-run homer that gave UW the temporary lead.

Track and Field
The Badgers shined in their final meet of the regular season, winning 10 events at the Wisconsin Open held at UW's McClimon Complex. 

Wisconsin got most of its wins on the track during Saturday's meet, which also served as Senior Day for the 10 seniors on the women's track and field team. 

Three of those seniors led the Badgers in the high jump. Monika Jakutyte won the event with her clearance of 5 feet, 8 ½ inches. Kate Flood took second (5-3 1/4) while Jessica Flax finished in a close third (5-2 1/4). 

Many freshmen recorded wins at the Wisconsin Open as well. Yolanda Hayes-Barnes got the win for UW in the long jump with her clearance of 17-5 ¼, while Dana Steffen won the 3000-meter steeplechase in the first time she's run the event (11:42.41). Marissa Savitch was part of the Badgers' winning 4 x 100 meter relay (47.64, a tie for the fastest time by a Badger team this season). Gabrielle Anzalone led the Badgers in a dominant showing in the 3000 meters. The freshman won the event in 9:45.73, while six UW runners (including freshmen Anne Gregory and redshirt freshmen Erica Spiegelberg, Rebecca Stoebe, and Jessica Sykes) finished second through seventh. Spiegelberg (9:46.24) and Sykes (10:29.09) recorded new personal-best times in the event.

Junior Brittney Harper won the 400 meters with the fastest time by a Badger runner this year (55.53), while classmate Hanna Knurr won the 1500 meters in the first meet she ran it in this season (4:33.58). Sophomore Elizabeth Wendt ran the 800 meters for the first time on Saturday and won in 2:13.22. 
Sophomore and Monona native Angela Boushea rounded out the wins for the Badgers in the hammer with her throw of 174-10. 

Up next for the Badgers is the 2012 Big Ten Outdoor Track and Field Championships, held next weekend (May 11-13) at the McClimon Complex. Ticket information can be found here.