What is the Women’s College World Series
What is the ultimate college title in women’s amateur softball? Undoubtedly it would be winning the NCAA Women’s College World Series (WCWS). This is an annual contest between the top NCAA Division I College softball teams in the United States. This series has been played since 1982 and it gets bigger every year.
The WCWS is held each year from mid-May through early June. The early games in the tournament are held at various colleges and universities around the country with the Championship series being played at the ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, OK. Beginning in mid-May 64 teams are selected to compete for the title of best team in college softball. 31 teams who win their conference titles for the season receive automatic bids to the tourney. The other 33 teams are selected in at at-large basis.
How Does the WCWS Bracket Work
The bracketing has changed through the years since 1982 but currently there are several rounds in the tournament. The first is Regionals where the 64 teams selected are split into 16 groups of 4 teams. Each group of 4 competes at 16 different campuses nation-wide in a double-elimination tournament for the right to advance.
From Regionals the 16 winning teams advance to the Super Regionals. They are divided into 8 groups of 2 teams. Each group of 2 will play in a best of three tournament format where they play up to three games against each other with whichever team wins 2 of the 3 games advancing.
The 8 teams winning their Super Regionals get to advance to the Championship series in Oklahoma City. There they play in a double-elimination tournament until only 2 teams are left. Those two final teams get to play for the Championship in a best-of-three series.
Fun Facts about the WCWS:
- Currently 64 teams are chosen to participate in this tournament each year
- UCLA has won an amazing 11 NCAA Division I Softball Championships, the most of any single team
- The 2013 series championship game boasts the highest attendance record with 9,698 fans enjoying the game. A combined total of 75,960 fans attended games played in the 2012 WCWS.
- The longest game ever played in the WCWS was in 1984 in Omaha, NE where Texas A&M defeated Cal Poly Pomona after an incredible 25 innings
- The PAC-12 (formerly PAC-10) conference has won the championship more than any other conference in the history of the WCWS with a whopping 23 out of 31 titles
- 2012 winner Alabama was the first SEC team to ever win the championship
Women’s College World Series Winners
|2011||Arizona State (60-6)||Florida|
|2008||Arizona State (65-5)||Texas A&M|
|1998||Fresno St. (52-11)||Arizona|
|1996||* Arizona (58-9)||Washington|
|1995||* UCLA (50-6)||Arizona|
|1994||* Arizona (64-3)||Cal St. Northridge|
|1992||* UCLA (54-2)||Arizona|
|1990||UCLA (62-7)||Fresno St.|
|1989||* UCLA (48-4)||Fresno St.|
|1988||UCLA (53-8)||Fresno St.|
|1987||Texas A&M (56-8)||UCLA|
|1986||* Cal St. Fullerton (57-9-1)||Texas A&M|
|1984||UCLA (45-6-1)||Texas A&M|
|1983||Texas A&M (41-11)||Cal St. Fullerton|
|1982||* UCLA||Fresno St.|
* = Undefeated team in the final series
How Can you Enjoy the WCWS?
Every year thousands of young girls watch and attend WCWS games. This venue helps promote the sport and make it more visible each year. If you or someone in your family plays softball or just loves the sport I would encourage you to catch a game this year. If you live near or want to travel to Oklahoma City you can attend in person. Check out this website for information on the games, hotels and more. If you can’t attend in person many of the Regional and Super Regional games and all of the Championship games will be televised on one of the ESPN stations.