We've got a battle for first place in the Big Ten on our hands. And, a rematch. What more could you ask for?
No. 7 Wisconsin will travel to take on No. 5 Minnesota on the road, and the Gophers will return home after playing five of the last six matches away from Maturi Pavilion. The match is this Thursday, Nov. 14 at 9 p.m. ET.
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The Badgers and Gophers are tied at 13-1 on top of the Big Ten standings. The Badgers' first conference loss just came against Ohio State in four sets last weekend. Meanwhile, the Gophers' only conference loss was against Wisconsin in October.
Earlier this season
The first matchup between the Gophers and Badgers this season was on Oct. 13. The result of that match was a Wisconsin sweep, and it was the first time the Badgers had taken down the Gophers in its last nine attempts. Dana Rettke led the Badgers with 16 kills on .500 hitting. Molly Haggerty tallied 12 kills and Tiffany Clark led the backcourt defense with 13 digs. Speaking of that defense, they held the Gophers to .188 hitting in the sweep.
Since that loss though, the Gophers have won eight straight matches. In the same week that Wisconsin fell to Ohio State, Minnesota swept the Buckeyes. In that match, the Gophers displayed a balanced offense, with three players tallying double-digit kills, ahead of their leading scorer Stephanie Samedy. Airi Miyabe and Adanna Rollins notched 11 kills and Alexis Hart added 10. Samedy had six in the sweep.
All-time series history
The Gophers have historically been more successful over the Badgers. Minnesota is 52-31 all-time against Wisconsin, dating back to 1975. This year's loss to the Badgers occurred in Madison, Wisconsin, and was Wisconsin's first series win since Oct. 18, 2014. That victory also came on Wisconsin's home court. This time around, it will be in Minneapolis.
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How Minnesota and Wisconsin matchup statistically
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As a team, Wisconsin leads the Big Ten in hitting percentage, assists, service aces and kills. Its offense has typically been executing really well. Minnesota is second in assists and kills in the Big Ten, and leads the conference in blocks and digs, which shows the efficiency of its defense. So this should be an interesting matchup.
How to watch
First serve will take place at 9 p.m. ET. The match will be televised on Big Ten Network as well as through the FOX Sports App on mobile or tablet. You can also listen to the match here.