The Wisconsin Badgers (22-6 overall, 18-2 Big Ten) volleyball team walloped Rutgers 3-0 (25-14, 25-12, 25-21) on Saturday night to clinch at least a share of the B1G title. After finding out later in the evening that Minnesota beat Penn State, the Badgers were the outright B1G regular season champs!
Per a Big Ten Conference press release:
With the victory, the Badgers claimed their sixth Big Ten title and the first since the 2014 season.
Two Badgers finished with double-digit kills, as Molly Haggerty and Grace Loberg shared match-high honors with 11 kills apiece. As a team, Wisconsin hit .367 while holding Rutgers to a .125 hitting percentage.
With the outright Big Ten title, Wisconsin earns the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The Badgers started off the season with an extremely difficult non-conference schedule and their, well, not exactly sterling record reflected that.
“It’s [winning the conference] one of our two goals every single year so it feels good to have accomplished this during my time here. Preseason was obviously not how we wanted to start off the season, but our growth from those games and what we learned has helped us through those tough matches and playing all the top teams twice,” said Madison Duello after the match.
THAT IS HOW YOU END THE REGULAR SEASON!! pic.twitter.com/YFqnb3gCmt— Wisconsin Volleyball (@BadgerVB) December 1, 2019
“I think this is just going to propel us forward into the tournament. We’ve learned a lot – we learned a lot even just last night – so to come back and win the way we did tonight was awesome and I was really proud of our team. Every single night in the Big Ten is a grind, it doesn’t matter who’s on the other side of the net. We’ve had to be mentally and physically tough, so to come out on top this year is awesome,” added Dana Rettke.
Per the UW press release on the game: the bracket for the 2019 NCAA Championship will be announced Sunday at 7:30 p.m. CT live on ESNPU. UW will be making its seventh straight, and 23rd overall, NCAA tournament appearance. The Badgers are 46-22 in 22 years of the tournament, advancing to at least the Sweet 16 the last six years in a row.
We at B5Q will have much more of the volleyball team’s conference title and their NCAA Tournament seed throughout the week.