Coming off an epic, come-from-behind victory the last time the two squads met, The Badger Herald and The Daily Cardinal will play their decades-old grudge out on the softball fields of Vilas Park today.
It was last October when the Herald football team ended a long string of defeats on the gridiron in the annual series with a last-second touchdown and point-after conversion. A win on the diamond would also put to bed a losing streak.
“We’ve got all the confidence in the world after [the football win],” said News Content Editor Nick Penzenstadler, who became a cult icon with his game-winning reception last October. “Now that we’ve got that winning taste, we don’t want to let that get away.”
Looking for a new formula after last year’s pitching debacle that left them no chance at victory, Herald management has tabbed Campus Editor and screwball specialist Ken Harris to toe the rubber. Though he has been a highly touted prospect in the Herald ranks for some time, today’s game will mark Harris’ first career start.
With his debut coming in such a ballyhooed series, it wouldn’t be surprising at all if Harris had some nerves going into the game. That doesn’t seem to be the case, however.
“My whole life up to this point has prepared me for this moment,” said Harris, who is also known as “Captain Blood” for his occasionally menacing demeanor and soft spot for Emilio Estevez in “D2: The Mighty Ducks.”
“I’m not one to make bold proclamations,” Harris said, “but I guarantee those Cardinal chumps won’t know what hit them.”
The defense behind Harris is still up in the air, especially after Herald manager Tom Schalmo released his required injury report. The report lists Associate Sports Editor and star outfielder Derek Zetlin and Urban Correspondent Bassey Etim as questionable with hangovers. Features Editor Bridget Roby is doubtful with a lost glove, and Photo Editor Jeff Schorfheide has been listed as out with a Mountain Dew-induced caffeine overdose.
As is always the case in this series, the final out does not mean the end of competition. The two sides will face off over a series of flip cup matches. And while winning on the softball field is cause for celebration, true glory is always found at the bottom of a plastic cup tipped on its top.