fThe 10th-ranked Wisconsin Badgers ended the nation's longest winning streak, defeating fifth-ranked Minnesota in three games, 15-13, 15-1, 15-13, before 4,523 fans at the Sports Pavilion. It was the first loss for the Gophers (15-1, 4-1 Big Ten) this season, while the Badgers (14-2, 4-1 Big Ten) forge a three-way tie for second place in the Big Ten, one match behind Ohio State.
Wisconsin's Sherisa Livingston had 26 kills and hit .388 to lead the Badger offense, and Jenny Maastricht added 18 kills at a .359 hitting percentage. Stephanie Hagen led Minnesota with 20 kills and hit .326 to lead the Gopher offense. Nicole Branagh was limited to 10 kills at a .022 hitting percentage.
Minnesota jumped out to a 12-5 lead in the first game, before the Badgers rallied with 10 of the next 11 points to win the opening game. Wisconsin allowed Minnesota the first point of the second game before scoring 15 consecutive points to win the second game. In the third game, Minnesota led 10-3 before the Badgers tied the game with seven straight points at 10-10. After ties at 11 and 12, Wisconsin scored three of the final four points to end the match. Minnesota fended off seven match points before allowing the final point.
Wisconsin enjoyed a .289-.185 hitting percentage advantage over Minnesota, had a 65-54 edge in kills, 14-4.5 in blocks and a 67-56 in digs. The .185 hitting percentage is the second-lowest percentage of the season.
The Gophers will host Northwestern on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Sports Pavilion.