Softball starts out 16-3

Madison College shows it has the hitting, pitching to be a contender this year



The entire dugout greets Katelin Gilbertson (22) at home plate after she hit a two-run homerun in the Madison College softball team’s season opening game against Rock Valley College, a 4-1 victory for the WolfPack.

Ethan Maurice, Staff Writer

Madison College returned home from their annual spring break Florida trip with a historic 16-3 record, and they should have plenty of confidence heading into the rest of the season.

The WolfPack have their first game at Goodman Field on Thursday, March 29, where they take on Bryant & Stratton College. You can listen to that game live on

Fast Start

The WolfPack started the year in fine form, winning their first 12 contests, a program record. During that streak, they beat every single conference team, including Rock Valley, who was at the time ranked number 1 in the nation.
Madison College also beat Mott Community College, a Division II School out of Michigan, as well as Marshalltown Community College, on their 12-game winning streak.

Through their first 17 games, Madison has scored 167 runs, which leaves their average just below 10 runs per game, an outstanding number. If the WolfPack keep up this pace, it will be an exciting season.

Dominant Pitching

Ali Walker has been a standout pitcher this season. The freshman out of Portage has a 4-0 record, along with a 0.99 earned run average. She leads the team in strikeouts (38) and innings pitched (28.1).

“She is a difference maker,” said assistant coach Mike Bridge. “She is big for us.”

Walker, along with four sophomore pitchers, have been keeping opponents shut down so far this season. Madison pitchers have allowed only a .232 batting average, while Madison College batters have hit .397 this season. Madison College also has a huge lead in the runs category, with 115 more runs scored than allowed.

Sophomores Mackenzie Terrill and Riley Landenberger showed great leadership on the Florida trip. Neither player has lost a game, and both have ERAs under 2.00. They both also average one strikeout per inning.

Thunder and Lightning

If you decide to throw a picnic behind the fences at Goodman Field, you’ll have to watch out for flying softballs. Five WolfPack players have hit a homerun this season, showcasing the power Madison College has added to its lineup.

Sophomore Katelin Gilbertson has hit three homeruns this year. She is joined by freshmen Dany Gumz (3), Kylie Endres (2), Maddie Krafcheck (2), and Nicole Ferch (1) in the homerun club.

The WolfPack also have enjoyed success on the basepaths. Their current success rate on stolen bases is above 90 percent. So far Sam Schloegl and Maegan Brookins have enjoyed the most success. They have 15 stolen bases between the two, and have yet to be caught.

Sophomore Leadership

Coach Leo Kalinowski has 11 sophomores on the team this year, a high number for any sport. With pitchers like Terrill and Wienen, the WolfPack have cool heads on the mound, and shouldn’t lack confidence in the later innings.

Batters such as Gilbertson and Ashley Kniesel are able to provide plenty of base runners, and the WolfPack have no trouble putting up numbers on the scoreboard. Being a second-year player comes with a different set of responsibility compared to a freshman.

“Going along with that, its like helping prepare the freshman for what the first spring games are going to be like,” summed up Landenberger.

Challenges Ahead

Madison College has enjoyed mostly success in the early part of the season. However, they have lost a couple games, and have made mistakes along the way.

One place where the WolfPack struggle is with errors.

Madison pitchers have given up 52 runs this season, but only 29 of them are earned. If the WolfPack can cut down on those runs, they will be even more dominant.

One of the team’s biggest goals this season is to win their conference. The team that stands in their way? Rock Valley College.
Sure, the WolfPack have beaten them already, but when they play each other in a doubleheader on April 10 in Rockford, it could decide who will win the conference championship.