April 16, 2013
Now past the halfway point of the conference season, Big Ten teams look to finish the season strong as the 2013 Big Ten Softball Tournament, staged May 9-12 in Lincoln, Neb., is a little more than three weeks away.
• Michigan, with a national-leading 17-game winning streak, stands atop conference standings with 12-0 mark. Minnesota is second at 9-3, while Nebraska is third at 8-3.
• Televised and streaming coverage continues as BTN is set to nationally distribute nine matchups this week.
• The Big Ten is one of three conferences, joining the SEC and Pac-12, with six or more teams in the top 50 of the latest RPI report, released by the NCAA. Michigan (10th), Nebraska (15th), Iowa (22nd), Wisconsin (25th), Minnesota (33rd) and Northwestern (46th) appear in the top 50.
• Five Big Ten teams are receiving votes in the national rankings this week. Michigan climbs into the top 10 in both the USA Softball and NFCA polls, appearing at No. 9. Nebraska is rated 18th in the USA Softball poll and 21st in the NFCA rankings, while Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin each are among the squads also receiving votes in both polls.
• Indiana’s Amanda Wagner (on-base percentage), Michigan’s Sierra Romero (home runs, RBI per game) and Nicole Sappingfield (runs per game), Minnesota’s Sara Moulton (shutouts, wins) and Kaitlyn Richardson (batting average, on-base percentage), Nebraska’s Tatum Edwards (shutouts) and Penn State’s Cassidy Bell (home runs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage) rank among the top 10 nationally in their respective stat categories.