, , ,

Badgers topple ranked opponents in football, volleyball, women’s hockey

No. 1 Wisconsin beat No. 2 Ohio State twice this weekend in women's hockey

A Wisconsin player holds the ball and runs as a Penn State dives to tackle him.
Wisconsin’s Kendric Pryor, right, is tackled by Penn State’s Brandon Smith, left, on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. Angela Major/WPR

It was a big weekend for the Wisconsin Badgers.

With wins over ranked opponents in women’s hockey, volleyball and football, the Badgers had plenty to celebrate. Wisconsin is ranked in the top 25 nationally for women’s hockey, volleyball, men’s and women’s cross-country and men’s and women’s swimming. Meanwhile, the football team is making a resurgence after a rocky start to the season.

It’s about “how do you move forward and continue to grow,” head football coach Paul Chryst said Monday.

Stay informed on the latest news

Sign up for WPR’s email newsletter.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Here’s a rundown of what’s happening with the Badgers.

Reigning national champions still undefeated in women’s hockey

No. 1 Wisconsin beat No. 2 Ohio State in back-to-back games over the weekend, cementing the Badgers’ spot atop the rankings.

On Saturday, Wisconsin was down a goal after the first period but came back to win 3-1. On Sunday, senior Nicole LaMantia tallied both of Wisconsin’s goals, including the overtime winner, to lift the Badgers over the Buckeyes.

The Badgers are 10-0, and they’ve outscored opponents 55-8 this season. The Badgers boast the country’s top three scorers in sophomore Makenna Webster, sophomore Casey O’Brien and senior Daryl Watts. O’Brien has more goals than any player in the nation.

Wisconsin will take on Minnesota State this weekend.

The Wisconsin women’s hockey team steps onto the field at Camp Randall as fans cheer.
Members of the Wisconsin women’s hockey team smile as the crowd cheers for them Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. Angela Major/WPR

Badgers volleyball tallies a couple of big wins

Wisconsin is coming off consecutive Final Four appearances, and the Badgers have one of the top teams again this season. They’re ranked No. 3, with wins against a slew of ranked opponents.

The Badgers took care of business at Madison Field House last weekend, beating No. 6 Ohio State on Friday and No. 14 Penn State on Saturday.

“I thought that was just a gritty match. We came out not playing our best volleyball. I think everyone could see that, and we grew together throughout that match. I think we found our groove,” senior Dana Rettke said Saturday.

Coming up, Wisconsin will face a couple of tough opponents in No. 9 Nebraska and No. 7 Purdue.

In football, Badgers could make a statement against No. 9 Iowa

For the first time this season, the Badgers have a winning record.

After losses to several ranked opponents earlier this season, the Badgers have found their footing. They beat Purdue on Saturday, to knock the Boilermakers from the rankings. And the Badgers could earn a big win this weekend when they face the Iowa Hawkeyes at Camp Randall.

“They are a great example of a group that plays together,” Chryst said of Iowa’s defense. The Hawkeyes have one of the nation’s top turnover margins, while the Badgers have one of the worst.

Still, with wins over Purdue and Illinois, and games remaining against Northwestern, Nebraska, Minnesota and Iowa, the Badgers could still find themselves playing for a Big Ten title.

Wisconsin swimming opens season with a splash

The Badgers were ranked in both men’s and women’s swimming to open this season, and they didn’t disappoint in their first meet. The men and women both defeated Hawaii and Arizona in Tucson last weekend.

Sophomore Phoebe Bacon, who swam at the Tokyo Olympics this summer, won five events, including the 100 and 200 backstroke.

“It’s nice to leave here with some quality wins, but more importantly, valuable experience racing and diving on the road,” said head coach Yuri Suguiyama.

Related Stories