June 27, 2019 | 84° F

Rutgers drops game at Wisconsin

Photo by Jeffrey Gomez |

Last weekend, the Rutgers softball team traveled to Madison, Wisconsin to take on the Badgers (14-11) in a three-game slate to open up its Big Ten conference schedule. 

The teams were scheduled to play one game each day, Friday through Sunday, but the nor’easter that hit New Brunswick on Wednesday forced the Scarlet Knights (15-15) to change their travel plans. The games were rescheduled for one on Saturday and a doubleheader on Sunday.

On Saturday, the game was canceled, as field temperatures were below 28 degrees. That left only two games remaining for a doubleheader on Sunday. 

The games on Sunday were scheduled for 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m., but the first game was delayed until 12:45 p.m., because of a field temperature below 28 degrees. Once it warmed up to 28 degrees, the teams were ready to play ball. 

With a 3-3 tie after four innings of play, Wisconsin was able to score once in the bottom half of the fifth and twice more in the sixth before shutting the door in the seventh en route to a 6-3 win over Rutgers. Kaitlyn Menz (8-6) was the winning pitcher for the Badgers, tossing all seven innings, while allowing only four hits and 3 earned runs. 

Junior Whitney Jones (6-6) was the losing pitcher for the Knights, pitching five innings and allowing 3 earned runs on seven hits. Jones allowed 5 runs in total, but 2 of those runs were unearned due to junior Jess Hughes’s error at shortstop. 

Senior catcher Sierra Maddox was 1-2 on the day with an RBI single. Sophomore left fielder Hailey Hoklotubbe and senior third baseman Meaghan Wells also had RBI’s for Rutgers in the loss. 

Hughes extended her hitting streak to 11 games with her single in the top of the third inning. Hughes is batting .425 over the span of her hit streak. 

The Knights also turned their 26th double play of the season in 30 games played thus far, which has them ranked second in the nation. With the loss, Rutgers dropped to 1-3 in Big Ten opening series since the program joined the conference in 2015. 

The final game of the doubleheader on Sunday was also canceled, as the Knights needed to catch their flight back to New Jersey. Both games that were canceled will not be made up this year. 

This weekend, Rutgers will host Penn State in its home opener, with games on Friday at 3 p.m., Saturday at 1 p.m. and Sunday at noon. The Nittany Lions (4-20) own the worst record in the Big Ten. 

For updates on the Rutgers softball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

Matthew Howe

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