Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (2024)

JWS Staff

Nov 29, 2022

Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (1)

Defending champion Wisconsin volleyball ended its regular season on an 18-match winning streak.

The Badgers have not lost since Sept. 25, even as the team endured a tough Big Ten schedule and the turmoil of a photo leak investigation, and now they enter the NCAA tournament with a 25-3 overall record and the No. 1 seed.

𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙍𝙤𝙖𝙙 𝙩𝙤 𝙊𝙢𝙖𝙝𝙖 begins now.

Badgers earn the No. 1 Seed in the Top Right Region. pic.twitter.com/BPSfSPSNHc

— Wisconsin Volleyball (@BadgerVB) November 28, 2022

The University of Wisconsin athletic department announced on Oct. 19 the investigation into a a leak of private photos and videos of Badgers women’s volleyball players, which were then shared on the internet.

At least one of the photos appears to have been taken after the team won the Big Ten title last November and shows members of the team posing with their sports bras lifted, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

The athletic department called the leak a “significant and wrongful invasion” of the athletes’ privacy. Yet even after the off-court issue, which highlighted the vulnerable position of college athletes, the Badgers continued to roll.

Wisconsin finished its conference season Saturday with a 3-1 win against Ohio State, clinching a 19-1 conference record and theBig Ten title. The only loss came on Sept. 25 against Minnesota.

“There was so much learning that came from our one loss against Minnesota,” coach Kelly Sheffield said. “That was really important for where we are right now. There was so much opportunity for us to learn throughout the course of the year and I am so proud of them.”

The 18-match winning streak is tied for the second-longest winning streak in program history. The 19-1 conference record is tied for the best conference record in program history.

Wisconsin already has sold out all-session tickets to its first- and second-round matches in the NCAA tournament. The Badgers will start their quest for a repeat title at 8 p.m. ET Friday against Quinnipiac.

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    Emma Hruby

    Jun 7, 2024

    Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (2)

    The NWSL is back in action this weekend following the June international break, as stars look to showcase Olympic form while clubs aim to build momentum going into the latter half of the season.

    All but four clubs have played 11 games, with Orlando, Kansas City, and Washington beginning to separate themselves from the pack at the top of the NWSL table. But it’s close quarters across places four through eight, with just seven points separating the teams as the league prepares for the most-expanded postseason in NWSL history.

    Orlando and Kansas City are riding unbeaten streaks, with the Pride on a historic eight-game winning streak. Forward Barbra Banda is the leader of the charge, with eight goals through just seven NWSL games played. She’s tied with Portland’s Sophia Smith in the Golden Boot race.

    With more than half the season to play, both Banda and Smith could be at a pace to contend for Sam Kerr's single-season NWSL scoring record of 18 goals.

    While the top three NWSL teams will go up against the bottom three this weekend, all eyes will be on Chicago where the Red Stars will play Bay FC in their first-ever match at historic Wrigley Field.

    The Red Stars are aiming to break the NWSL single-game attendance record, as they take the field inside the Chicago city limits for the first time since 2022. As of May 23rd, Chicago had sold 22,000 tickets, chipping away atSeattle's record of 34,130 when in 2023.

    Emma Hruby

    Jun 7, 2024

    Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (3)

    The Oklahoma Sooners swept the Texas Longhorns on Thursday to earn their fourth-straight Women's College World Series championship.

    It’s the first time any team has won four straight championships in NCAA softball history.

    Oklahoma pitcher Kelly Maxwell was named 2024 WCWS Most Outstanding Player after the team's 8-4 win sealed the deal for the Sooners.

    "They've cemented this program in history," said coach Patty Gasso after the game, whose eight national titles ties Arizona's Mike Candrea for the most won by any coach in Division I softball history. "They've cemented themselves in history. History can change, but these guys will never, ever be forgotten."

    The Sooners were dealt some pressure along the way, with their 20-game NCAA tournament winning streak snapped by Florida earlier in the week. There were no guarantees about Texas, either, with the Longhorns topping Oklahoma in their regular season series earlier this year.

    Gasso even conceded that this has been the team’s hardest title win yet, even though the Sooners outscored Texas 16-7 over two games in the finals. The title is Oklahoma's eighth championship overall, as well as their sixth in the past eight postseasons.

    "'Heavy is a head that wears the crown' is the one thing that really stuck out," Gasso said. "I heard someone say that. That really has felt true. It's been exhausting. These players are exhausted, but they keep going."

    Emma Hruby

    Jun 7, 2024

    Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (4)

    Aaliyah Edwards made rookie history on Thursday as her Washington Mystics made some WNBA history of their own — and not the good kind.

    With 23 points and 14 rebounds, Edwards became the first rookie this season with at least 20 points and 10 rebounds in a single game. She also had four blocks, becoming only the fourth rookie in WNBA history to record a game with at least 20 points, 10 rebounds, and four blocks within her first 10 career games, per ESPN.

    The former UConn star has now led the Mystics in points and rebounds in consecutive games, joining Chamique Holdsclaw as the only two rookies in franchise history to do so.

    "I just need everyone to know when everyone’s talking about the rookie class, don’t forget her name," Shatori Walker-Kimbrough said of her teammate after the game. "She made a statement today. She makes a statement every day. She comes in, she works. She puts her head down and works. She needs a little bit more talk, and she doesn’t let that affect her."

    While Edwards has been finding her groove, the Mystics have been unable to mirror the No. 6 overall draft pick's performance. Despite a halftime lead, they lost 79-71 to Chicago to fall to 0-10 on the season. It marks the worst start in franchise history.

    "Extremely frustrated," coach Eric Thibault said postgame.

    Emma Hruby

    Jun 6, 2024

    Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (5)

    Oklahoma is on the brink of a four-peat at the Women’s College World Series after taking Game 1 over Texas of the championship series 8-3.

    Should the Sooners win, they earn an eighth-overall and fourth-straight WCWS title. No other team has won four consecutive NCAA softball championships.

    "This is it," Sooners pitcher Kelly Maxwell, who transferred in this season from Oklahoma State, said of being on the brink. "This is my last opportunity. I'm just going to do everything I can to keep this team in it. I know that they have my back and I got theirs."

    While Oklahoma has dominated throughout the regular season, they did face an unexpected setback courtesy of ared-hot Florida team. In Monday’s Game 11, the No. 6-seeded Gators snapped the Sooners’ 20-game NCAA tournament win streak, forcing Tuesday’s winner-take-all Game 12 with a convincing 9-3 win. Florida’s victory was fueled by two monster home runs from infielder Skylar Wallace alongside Keagan Rothrock’s ace pitching.

    Despite the upset, a recomposed Oklahoma took the field the following day for a tight eight-inning clash culminating in awalk-off blastfrom Jayda Coleman that sent the Sooners to WCWS final.

    But head coach Patty Gasso knows there’s still work to be done in the WCWS.

    "We're not over-jubilant because we know there's still a lot of work to do against a very, very good team that has very good pitchers, very good hitters," Gasso said. "We know what's in front of us still. So you don't see us celebrating."

    Texas, meanwhile, entered the postseason as the No. 1 overall seed. And the Longhorns are not about to roll over: In their Super Regional against Texas A&M, they lost the first game before winning the next two to advance.

    Earlier this season, they lost the first game of their series to Oklahoma before rebounding to take their first series over the Sooners since 2009.

    "Now it's theirs to lose in some respect," Texas coach Mike White said of the Sooners. "They have to win one of the next two games. I like being in that position, sometimes being the underdog. We're the top dog for a little bit, so to speak, but were we? They're three-time national champions. It's a mind game.

    "Champions reframe. How can we reframe from this loss, what we're facing right now, come out and have a better game and see if we can play some good softball."

    Game 2 of the WCWS Championship Series starts at 8 PM ET on Thursday, June 6th and will be broadcast live on ESPN. Game 3, if necessary, will air on ESPN on Friday, June 7th starting at 8 PM ET.

    Wisconsin volleyball remains undefeated since photo leak scandal - Just Women's Sports (2024)
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