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first_imgUW senior pitcher Letty Olivarez is one of two seniors who suffered through consecutive 15-40 seasons as the softball program hit rock-bottom.[/media-credit]The recent struggles of the Wisconsin softball team are well-documented and well-known.However, the two people most familiar with the not-so-distant streak of mediocrity are pitcher Letty Olivarez and shortstop Katie Soderberg. The team’s only two seniors have seen the program slide from respectability, down a long road of darkness over the past couple years, to the curious “wait until next year” sense of optimism currently seen around Goodman Diamond.The Badgers are currently on a seven-game home winning streak, coming off a weekend sweep over Big Ten foe Indiana this past weekend. Eight freshmen are making large contributions, and regularly six freshmen can be spotted in the everyday lineup.Things are looking a little rosier for the softball program these days, though it wasn’t always this way.As recent as the middle of this year the team was firmly entrenched in the doldrums of the Big Ten, unable to pick up a win in any capacity.The transformation wasn’t easy, it wasn’t done overnight and it certainly isn’t over (the team is still 10 games under .500, with an 18-28 overall record). But it’s hard to not feel a little excitement for this once-battered program as the youth of the team matures.For freshman catcher Maggie Strange, leading the transformation were both Olivarez and Soderberg.“For me, she’s obviously been a great model on the field and off the field as well,” Strange said of Olivarez. “On the field she has taught me leadership and what the ‘W’ really means.”Olivarez has been a workhorse for the Badgers this year, appearing in 37 of the team’s 46 games, starting 32 of them.Her record (11-21) will not wow anyone, but then again, for much of the season, she was receiving little to no run support despite her best efforts.Summing up her tough luck this season best is the April 14th game against Iowa. Olivarez’s stat line: seven innings pitched, two hits, one run and 10 strikeouts.The result? A 1-0 Badger loss.“It’s really frustrating. Letty pitched one of her best games…she was amazing,” freshman first baseman Molly Spence said after the loss. “As an offense, we just couldn’t help her out, [and] that’s disappointing because when she’s pitching such a good game, we want to be able to help her out.”Olivarez also lost a game in which she threw eight innings without surrendering an earned run.How? On the strength of two Wisconsin errors that led to five runs for Northern Illinois on April 20th.These wasted performances are also not exclusive to this season.Amazingly, the offense was far worse last year, when Olivarez suffered even more hard luck losses.With the addition of all the young bats such as Spence and infielder Shannel Blackshear, the overall team batting percentage has been improved by nearly 60 points.Despite it all, Olivarez has accepted her responsibility as leader wholeheartedly.“I think we’ve taken on a huge [leadership] role, especially [considering] there’s only two seniors and they’ve really looked up to us,” Olivarez said following Sunday’s game. “It’s coming to end so we’re putting it all out there and I just think that it’s a great group of girls and I feel like we’ve all come together.”Another subject Olivarez has vast knowledge of is the stress of a losing season and the frustration that evolves from it.She cites a more relaxed practice regiment and enhanced team chemistry as a way of reducing stress and improving success this year.Soderberg hasn’t made quite as big of an impact statistically speaking, but the jovial shortstop from British Columbia has improved her game and has made equally as big of an impact as a leader.“Katie Soderberg is doing a heck of a job out there at shortstop,” Strange said. “She’s picked it up, props to her.”Since being moved up to the leadoff role in the lineup in the second game of the April 20 doubleheader, the Badgers are 7-2.The added dimension of speed and her ability to get on base has consistently helped spark the team to perhaps its best streak in nearly five seasons.Although their days physically in a Badger uniform may be numbered, these two seniors will leave a lasting legacy they hope will provide a foundation for future success.Asked about her parting words to the team, Olivarez gave a concise answer:“Just [play with] heart and have fun.”last_img read more


first_img Argyll orders full compliance makeover with TruNarrative  August 17, 2020 SIS adds Irish Greyhound Derby to its portfolio August 13, 2020 StumbleUpon SIS grows Latin American footprint through Betcris deal August 12, 2020 Share Related Articles Share Submit Racing content and data services provider Sports Information Services (SIS) has secured a new two-year partnership with Argyll Entertainment, which will see SIS deliver its 24/7 Live Betting Channel. The channel, which will feature live streams of international horse racing and British and Irish greyhound racing, will deliver content from across six continents via Argyll’s SportNation.bet site. Philip Bell, Commercial Director at Argyll Entertainment, said: “We’re delighted to have signed this deal with SIS, which allows us to multiply the number of horse and greyhound races that we can stream to Argyll Entertainment customers online.“Given the host of first-class international racing action on the horizon, the deal comes at the perfect time to secure the best possible experience for our customers when it comes to watching both horse and greyhound racing from around the world at any time.”Punters will be able to access coverage from over 33,500 greyhound races per year, which will be broadcast each week from the UK and Irish tracks including Monmore and Mullingar. This will be complemented by coverage from over 19,000 international horse races from over 80 different racecourses.The channel will be delivered via a “Watch & Bet” format, providing around-the-clock frequent short-form betting events, which will help to optimise bettor engagement and dwell time, and drive betting revenues.Sandra McWilliams, Sales Director at SIS, said: “We’re thrilled to be delivering our new channel to Argyll Entertainment, an operator with a flair for innovation which is breaking into varied markets worldwide. Our 24/7 Mixed Racing Channel will offer Argyll’s customers quality betting events every three minutes, and we’re confident it will drive engagement and increase betting revenues.”last_img read more


first_imgA Judge has warned solicitors they better have a good excuse for not feeling well the day after the All-Ireland – like Donegal winning the final!Judge Kelly: Hopes Donegal solicitors have a good reason to be a little under the weather on September 22nd!Judge Paul Kelly addressed the matter at Letterkenny District Court. Judge Kelly had adjourned a number of cases until September 22nd next – the day after the All-Ireland at Croke Park.One such case involved a client of solicitor Kieran Dillon.But Mr Dillon referred to the date and suggested to Judge Kelly “A few practitioners may be under the weather that day because of certain events the previous day.”Judge Kelly smiled and said “I hope they have good reason to be.”COUNTDOWN TO CROKER: JUDGE HOPES SOLICITORS HAVE GOOD REASON TO BE UNDER WEATHER ON SEPTEMBER 22ND! was last modified: September 14th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:ALL-IRELAND FINALdonegalJudge Paul Kellysolicitor Kieran Dillonlast_img read more

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