By: Samantha Lewis
Edited By: Kaya Crawford
Shane Bevel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images
Each spring, 64 of the best D1 college softball teams compete in the NCAA Softball Championship. They do this in competition for one of eight spots in the Women’s College World Series. To be able to compete in the College Softball World Series, held June 1st- June 9th this year, each team must play in two rounds, regionals and super regionals, that each consist of multiple games. In the end there are only eight teams left. NCAA Regionals were held over the past weekend of May 19-21 based upon the bracket released May 14.. Half of the conferences that make up the bracket were awarded with automatic qualification as conference champs and the other half were filled with at-large selections to complete the bracket. There are so many amazing teams competing this year, but as always there is a favorite to win.
Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
The University of Oklahoma is the Number 1 Seed in the bracket this year. Oklahoma is the reigning champs of the World Series for the last two years. With those last two series wins, they are this year's favorite. The Sooners are entering the post-season with a winning streak of forty-three games, the second longest in NCAA history. Currently the longest winning streak is held by Arizona with 47 in the 1996/1997 season.
There’s new drama this year surrounding the championship. Is there anyone that has what it takes to beat the reigning champs? Fans have their eyes on UCLA, who beat Oklahoma in a game during last year's championships and are the No. 2 seed. The Bruins have won fifty two regular season games this year and are showing no signs of slowing down.
There has also been some talk over the sixteenth seed, Clemson Tigers, this year. Many are talking about who they think should have been in their place. Auburn and Baylor are among those teams. Despite the conversation, not everyone believes the Tigers did not deserve their place, with their record of forty-six wins and just nine losses, many think they should have ranked higher. They are even one of the teams that are on everyone’s radar for having a shot at beating the Sooners this year. Many are looking for them to be somewhat of an underdog this season, but with being 16th seed they will have a tough competition ahead of them.
It also looks to be a good year for the Arkansas Razorbacks. The last couple of seasons have been good for the Razorbacks and this year just might be their first time making it to the World Series. In the 2021-2022 season Arkansas set a single season record 48 wins and won their first SEC tournament title in the history of the team. The same year they also hosted the Super Regional for the second year in a row. If they manage to make it to the WCWS they would also be making Razorback history. In the 12 times the Razorbacks have never managed to make it to the Series, will this year be their year?
This weekend will kick off the battle for the championship. So many teams have had an amazing season, but how long will that continue for them? Great teams up against other great teams, and not everyone can win. This post season will be full of surprises, will the champs continue to reign, or will they fall from their throne?