Rettke Standing Above the Rest, As #6 Badgers Undefeated - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Rettke Standing Above the Rest, As #6 Badgers Undefeated

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MADISON (WKOW) -

A sweep for Badger women's volleyball last weekend means the 6th-ranked team is now 2-0 (and they've already beaten another ranked squad).  One reason for the sweep is freshman middle blocker Dana Rettke, who is standing above the rest.  She delivered 30 kills so far in two matches and leads the Badgers in kills, blocks.  Rettke is also third in the entire nation in hitting percentage at .619.  Because of her big debut weekend, Rettke was named the Big Ten Co-Player and Co-Freshman of the week.  But the freshman stays humble, and realizes she's only just getting started.

"I think that after I watched film, I realized that even though I did have 15 kills each match, there are things that I need to fix and there are things I need to work on," said Rettke after practice on Wednesday. "That's just what I'm doing now."

One of the reasons for Rettke's success so early on is because of her height - standing at 6'8" she is the tallest female in Badger sports history - across all women's sports.

"I work as hard as anyone else," said Rettke.  "I've been given this gift and I'm using it right now but it's kind of normal to me.  But I walk around and everyone's like, 'Wow she's tall, she must be on the volleyball team or the basketball team.'"

Rettke has been with the team now since the spring.  Early on there was a chance she was going to red-shirt, and sit out a year to develop before hitting the court.

"She got in here in the spring and she just kept getting better and better and in the preseason she was even at another level," said Wisconsin volleyball coach Kelly Sheffield.  "And that kind of threw [Rettke red-shirting] out of the window pretty quickly."

Rettke says in the time since the spring she's gained a lot of chemistry with another freshman, setter Sydney Hilley, who leads the team in assists.  Together, they and the Badgers will try to remain unbeaten this weekend at Kansas State - where they'll face the Wildcats, Syracuse and Arkansas.

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