NCAA Division I Softball Tournament

Last updated
NCAA Division I Softball Tournament
Current season, competition or edition:
Sports current event.svg 2019 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament
Sport College softball
Founded1982
No. of teams64
Most recent
champion(s)
UCLA (12th title)
Most titles UCLA (12 titles)
TV partner(s) ESPN
ESPN2
Official website NCAA.com

The NCAA Division I Softball Tournament is held annually in May/June and features 64 college softball teams in the United States, culminating in the Women's College World Series (WCWS), which is played in Oklahoma City.

College softball is softball as played on the intercollegiate level at institutions of higher education, predominantly in the United States. College softball is normally played by women at the Intercollegiate level, whereas college baseball is normally played by men.

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

The Women's College World Series (WCWS) is the final portion of the NCAA Division I Softball Championship for college softball in the United States. The tournament format consists of two four-team double-elimination brackets. The winners of each bracket then compete in a best-of-three series to determine the Division I WCWS National Champion. The WCWS takes place at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City. From 1969 to 1981, the women's collegiate softball championship was also known as the Women's College World Series and was promoted as such. During 1969–1979, the series was played in Omaha, and in 1980–1982 in Norman, Oklahoma. The NCAA held its first six Division I tournaments in Omaha in 1982–1987, followed by Sunnyvale, California in 1988–1989. The event has been held in Oklahoma City every year since then, except for 1996 in Columbus, Georgia.

Contents

Tournament play and team selection

The tournament is unique in that it features four tiers of competition and a loss does not necessarily eliminate a team from contention. In fact, throughout the entire tournament a team can lose a total of four games and still be crowned champions.

During team selection the top sixteen teams are given "national seeds", which are used for organizing the brackets. The first tier, called "regionals", consists of 16 locations that include four teams competing in a double elimination bracket. The regional containing overall #1 seed will be matched up with the regional containing the overall #16 seed, the #2 seed will be matched up with the #15 seed, and so on. The winner of each regional moves on to the second tier, the "super regionals".

Double-elimination tournament

A double-elimination tournament is a type of elimination tournament competition in which a participant ceases to be eligible to win the tournament's championship upon having lost two games or matches. It stands in contrast to a single-elimination tournament, in which only one defeat results in elimination.

The super regionals are played at eight locations throughout the country and consist of the 16 surviving teams, with the higher seeded team usually hosting. Two teams are matched up at each location and they play a best-of-three series to determine who moves on to the Women's College World Series.

The final eight teams meet in Oklahoma City in the Women's College World Series. The WCWS is further divided into two sections. The first part resembles the regional tier, as teams are broken in two groups of four to play in a double-elimination bracket. The winners of each bracket then meet in a championship series, held at the ASA Hall of Fame Stadium, which is similar to the super regional tier in that it is a best-of-three series. The winner of the WCWS is crowned national champion.

Oklahoma City State capital city in Oklahoma, United States

Oklahoma City, often shortened to OKC, is the capital and largest city of the U.S. state of Oklahoma. The county seat of Oklahoma County, the city ranks 27th among United States cities in population. The population grew following the 2010 Census, with the population estimated to have increased to 649,021 as of July 2018. The Oklahoma City metropolitan area had a population of 1,396,445, and the Oklahoma City-Shawnee Combined Statistical Area had a population of 1,469,124 residents, making it Oklahoma's largest municipality and metropolitan area by population.

ASA Hall of Fame Stadium

OGE Energy Field at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Complex is a 7,300-seat multi-purpose stadium in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States. It is owned and operated by USA Softball.

See also

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The 1989 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the eighth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1989, twenty Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of either two or three teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1989 Women's College World Series was held in Sunnyvale, California from May 24 through May 28 and marked the conclusion of the 1989 NCAA Division I softball season. For the second consecutive year, UCLA won the championship by defeating Fresno State 1–0 in the final game.

The 1990 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the ninth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1990, twenty Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of either two or three teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1990 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 23 through May 28 and marked the conclusion of the 1990 NCAA Division I softball season. For the third consecutive year, UCLA won the championship by defeating Fresno State 2–0 in the final game.

The 1991 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the tenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1991, twenty Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of either two or three teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1991 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 23 through May 26 and marked the conclusion of the 1991 NCAA Division I softball season. Arizona won their first championship by defeating three-time defending champions UCLA 5–1 in the final game.

The 1992 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the eleventh annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1992, twenty Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of either two or three teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1992 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 23 through May 26 and marked the conclusion of the 1992 NCAA Division I softball season. UCLA won their seventh championship by defeating defending champions Arizona 2–0 in the final game.

The 1993 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the twelfth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1993, twenty Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of either two or three teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1993 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 27 through May 31 and marked the conclusion of the 1993 NCAA Division I softball season. Arizona won their second championship by defeating defending champions UCLA 1–0 in the final game.

The 1994 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the thirteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1994, thirty-two Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of four teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1994 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 26 through May 30 and marked the conclusion of the 1994 NCAA Division I softball season. Arizona won their third championship, and second consecutive, by defeating Cal State Northridge 4–0 in the final game.

The 1995 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the fourteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1995, thirty-two Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of four teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1995 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 25 through May 29 and marked the conclusion of the 1995 NCAA Division I softball season. UCLA won their eighth NCAA championship, and ninth overall, by defeating Arizona 4–2 in the final game. UCLA pitcher Tanya Harding was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player, the first time the honor was awarded by the NCAA. The Bruins' participation and championship were later vacated by the NCAA.

The 1996 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the fifteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1996, thirty-two Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of four teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1996 Women's College World Series was held in Columbus, Georgia from May 23 through May 27 and marked the conclusion of the 1996 NCAA Division I softball season. This marked the last time that the Women's College World Series was held in a city other than Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and previewed Golden Park's hosting of softball events for the 1996 Summer Olympics. Arizona won their fourth NCAA championship by defeating Washington 6–4 in the final game. Arizona second baseman Jenny Dalton was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 1997 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the sixteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1997, thirty-two Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of four teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1997 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 22 through May 26 and marked the conclusion of the 1997 NCAA Division I softball season. The event returned to Oklahoma City after a one year hiatus, and it has remained there ever since. Arizona won their fifth NCAA championship by defeating UCLA 10–2 in the final game. Arizona pitcher Nancy Evans was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 1998 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the seventeenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1998, thirty-two Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of four teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1998 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 21 through May 25 and marked the conclusion of the 1998 NCAA Division I softball season. Fresno State won their first NCAA championship by defeating Arizona 1–0 in the final game. Fresno State pitcher Amanda Scott was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 1999 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the eighteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 1999, forty-eight Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of six teams, each in a double elimination format. The 1999 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 25 through May 31 and marked the conclusion of the 1999 NCAA Division I softball season. UCLA won their ninth NCAA championship and tenth overall by defeating Washington 3–2 in the final game. UCLA infielder Julie Adams was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 2000 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the nineteenth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 2000, forty-eight Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of six teams, each in a double elimination format. The 2000 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 25 through May 29 and marked the conclusion of the 2000 NCAA Division I softball season. Oklahoma won their first NCAA championship by defeating UCLA 3–1 in the final game. UCLA infielder Jennifer Stewart was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 2003 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the twenty-second annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 2003, sixty-four Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of eight teams, each in a double elimination format. The 2003 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 22 through May 25 and marked the conclusion of the 2003 NCAA Division I softball season. UCLA won their tenth NCAA championship and eleventh overall by defeating California 1–0 in the final game. UCLA pitcher Keira Goerl was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 2004 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the twenty-third annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May 2004, sixty-four Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of eight teams, each in a double elimination format. The 2004 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from May 27 through May 31 and marked the conclusion of the 2004 NCAA Division I softball season. UCLA won their eleventh NCAA championship and twelfth overall by defeating California 3–1 in the final game. LSU pitcher Kristin Schmidt was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 2005 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the twenty-fourth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May and June 2005, sixty-four Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of eight teams, each in a double elimination format. The 2005 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from June 2 through June 8 and marked the conclusion of the 2005 NCAA Division I softball season. Michigan won their first championship by defeating UCLA two games to one in the championship series. Michigan first baseman Samantha Findlay was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

The 2006 NCAA Division I Softball Tournament was the twenty-fifth annual tournament to determine the national champion of NCAA women's collegiate softball. Held during May and June 2006, sixty-four Division I college softball teams contested the championship. The tournament featured eight regionals of eight teams, each in a double elimination format. The 2006 Women's College World Series was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma from June 1 through June 6 and marked the conclusion of the 2006 NCAA Division I softball season. Arizona won their seventh championship by defeating Northwestern two games to none in the championship series. Arizona pitcher Alicia Hollowell was named Women's College World Series Most Outstanding Player.

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