Badgers softball drops back-and-forth battle

Huskers best Wisconsin in home opener, 7-4
Badgers softball drops back-and-forth battle

Despite a tough hitting battle, the Wisconsin softball team (23-4 overall, 2-2 Big Ten) dropped its home opener to Nebraska (9-20, 1-3) in extra innings at Goodman Diamond on Friday night.

After giving up a leadoff double in the top of the first inning to Alyvia Simmons, freshman pitcher Kaitlyn Menz snared a line drive from MJ Knighten and doubled off Simmons.

In the bottom half of the inning, The Badgers opened the scoring with a double from senior Chloe Miller into the left-center field gap, scoring junior Kelsey Jenkins to make it a 1-0 UW lead.

In the bottom of the third inning, a squeeze bunt by sophomore Melanie Cross scored pinch-runner sophomore McKenna Heim, who beat a tag on a flip from the Huskers’ third baseman to make it 2-0 Badgers.

Nebraska tied the game in the next half-inning on a two-RBI single up the middle from Tristen Edwards to tie the game at 2-2. The Huskers then took their first lead of the game on a RBI double from Kaylan Jablonksi to put the Badgers in a 3-2 hole.

The game continued to swing back and forth in the bottom of the fourth as Miller smacked a two-run dinger, her seventh of the year, to make it 4-3 in Wisconsin’s favor.

In the top of the fifth, a Knighten RBI single to right made it a 4-4 game. Neither team would be able to break through again in the sixth and seventh innings, sending the Badgers to their second extra-innings game in less than a week. In the Huskers’ half of the eighth inning, back-to-back homeruns would put Nebraska up 7-4. First, Tristen Edwards launched a two-run shot to left field and Kaylan Jablonski quickly followed up with a solo shot of her own.