It has taken its sweet time, but it appears spring has finally come to Minnesota. The Minnesota Golden Gophers softball team will be playing at home on Wednesday in games that are being made up from previous weather delays. The softball team will host the Wisconsin Badgers for a big Big Ten doubleheader,
The Gopher softball team will look to remain hot as they come into the doubleheader with the Badgers on a seven game winning streak. Minnesota has now won a program record 26 consecutive home games, and will have a chance to add two more Wednesday afternoon.
Last weekend the Gophers swept the Nebraska Cornhuskers. The three games were never in doubt as Minnesota easily cruised to 10-1, 6-0 and 5-1 wins. Sophomore Amber Fiser went 3-0 on the weekend and was named the Co-Big Ten Pitcher of the Week on Tuesday. Fiser has allowed just one earned run in her last six appearances.
The Gophers are getting some help on offense from the usual subjects as well. Sophomore catcher Kendyl Lindaman has 17 home runs on the season, just four off of the school’s single season record she set in her freshman campaign. Her 37 career home runs already have her tied for fifth all time in Gopher history. Meanwhile junior outfielder Maddie Houlihan is in the middle of an 11 game hitting streak in which she has gone 15-38 with four home runs and 12 rbi during the run.
The Gophers will look to sweep the Badgers in their yearly doubleheader just like they did in 2015 and 2017. However, the last time Wisconsin came to Jane Sage Cowles stadium in 2016, they would sweep the Gophers in a doubleheader. The badgers are squarely in the middle of the pack in the Big Ten standings. They come into Wednesday with a 22-17 overall record and 6-6 mark in the Big Ten. However they have won six of their last seven games and took two of three from Purdue last weekend. Fiser will need too try and shut down senior Brooke Wyderski as she leads the team with 46 hits, 18 doubles, six home runs and 36 RBI.
The Gophers are now 27-14 overall on the season and 10-3 in Big Ten play—good enough for third place. Only Michigan and Indiana are ahead of the Gophers in the standings, but Minnesota will face neither team in the regular season. Minnesota currently is ranked 25th in the latest NCAA Softball RBI ratings and should have a fairly strong lock on an NCAA at-large berth if they take care of business down the stretch. The Gophers will head on the road immediately after their doubleheader on Wednesday to play a three game series at Purdue this weekend.
Game one of the Gophers and Badgers doubleheader will begin at 1PM and will air live on BTN. Game two will begin 30 minutes after the end of game one and will air live on BTN2GO, and tape delayed at 8PM Wednesday on BTN.