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WCWS Tournament of Champions Bracket: Semifinals

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In absence of the 2020 WCWS, we bring you the Tournament of Champions! We teamed up with the NCAA to pick the Top 16 teams to walk away with the highly coveted national title. After a hotly contested second round of games, we have 4 teams remaining.

Here’s an in-depth look at the final four teams remaining on the bracket. Make sure you vote on your favorite Championship team so they can advance to the next round!


UCLA 2003

The Bruins’ senior class entered the 2003 season as the only class without a championship title* coming off their worst finish in an NCAA tournament (5th) in 2002. The previous two seasons, the Bruins suffered consecutive runner-up finishes to Oklahoma (2000) and Arizona (2001). With the loss of two Olympians, Stacey Nuevman and Amanda Freed to graduation, the 2003 squad relied heavily on its young freshman class to bring the trophy back to Westwood. Dropping the first game to California, the Bruins clawed back to beat the Texas Longhorns twice on Saturday with Natasha Wately’s infamous slide at home.

In the finals, Keira Goerl started for the Bruins and went on to throw the only no-hitter in Women’s College Series history. Toria Auelua’s ninth-inning RBI single led UCLA to its ninth NCAA Softball Championship as the Bruins defeated California 1-0 in the National Championship Game. The game was originally scheduled to be broadcast live on ESPN, but because the Yankees-Red Sox Major League Baseball, the nine-inning thriller was aired on a tape-delayed.

Players To Note: 
Natasha Watley
Senior Shortstop
Natasha Watley The 2003 Pac-10 Player of The Year and the Honda Cup Award Winner was the nation’s top female athlete. The triple-threat lefty anchored the Bruin defense and continued the long line of Olympic shortstops for UCLA. In her senior season, she hit .481 racking up the most hits (102) in the nation and

Keira Goerl 
Junior Pitcher 
In her junior season, Keira Goerl tossed 310.7 innings appearing in 48 games for the Bruins going 40-7, ranking second in the NCAA in ERA (0.63). The junior right-hander was the Pac-10 Pitcher of the Year and Most Outstanding Player of the Women’s College Series.

By The Numbers:

Coach: Sue Enquist
Assistant Coach: Kelly Inoye-Perez
Assistant Coach: Gina Vecchinone
Assistant Coach: Lisa Fernandez

Overall Record: 54-7
Pac-10 Record: 17-4

Road to OKC
NCAA Regionals – Fresno, Calif.
vs. Colgate, 8-0 W
vs. Fresno State, 3-0 W
vs. Michigan State, 6-2 W

NCAA Women’s College World Series
vs. California 7-3, L
vs. Louisiana 5-1, W
vs. Washington 2-1, W
vs. Texas, 3-0 W
vs. Texas, 2-1 W
vs. Cal,  W 1-0 (9)


Photo by Kelly Streeter

Florida 2015

The Gators went wire-to-wire as the nation’s top team. Florida captured the program’s second straight national title by defeating Michigan 2-1 in the championship series at the Women’s College World Series. Florida won the opener against Michigan and took the winner-take-all Game 3 with a 4-1 win to become the third program in history to win back-to-back NCAA titles. Two-way senior star Lauren Haeger shoulder a big load for the Gators and was named the WCWS Most Outstanding Player. The SEC champion Gators had an SEC-heavy postseason route, beating Kentucky in the Super Regionals and Tennessee, LSU and Auburn at the WCWS.

Players To Note: 
Lauren Haeger
Senior
Pitcher
Haeger did it all for the Gators during their national title run. A pitcher who can rake, the two-way star finished her career with 73 wins and 71 home runs. The right-hander was named the WCWS Most Outstanding Player, USA Softball Player of the Year, SEC Pitcher of the Year, SEC Female Athlete of the Year and given the Honda Award for softball. Haeger finished the season 32-2 with a 1.23 ERA, 214 strikeouts and 43 walks in 222.1 IP. She batted .348 with 19 home runs and 71 RBIs.

Kelsey Stewart
Junior
Infielder
Stewart led the Gators in hitting (.435), runs scored (71), hits (101), doubles (19), triples (11) and stolen bases (26). She reached base safely in 63 of Florida’s 67 games. She was a first-team All-American, SEC Player of the Year, SEC All-Defensive team selection and named to the WCWS All-Tournament team. Stewart recorded a hit in 10 of Florida’s 11 NCAA games.

By The Numbers
Record: 60-7
SEC Record: 18-5

Head Coach: Tim Walton
Assistant Coach: Jennifer Rocha
Assistant Coach: Sharonda McDonald

Road to Oklahoma City
Vs. Florida A&M 6-0 W (Regional)
Vs. Hofstra 7-0 W (Regional)
Vs. Florida Atlantic 1-0 (8) W (Regional)
Vs. Kentucky 7-0 W (Super Regional)
Vs. Kentucky 1-0 W (Super Regional)

Vs. Tennessee 7-2 W (WCWS, Game 1)
Vs. LSU 4-0 W (WCWS, Game 2)
Vs. Auburn 3-2 (9) W (WCWS, Game 3)
Vs. Michigan 3-2 W (WCWS, Game 4)
Vs. Michigan 1-0 L (WCWS, Game 5)
Vs. Michigan 4-1 W (WCWS, Game 6)


2003 UCLA vs 2015 Florida

  • #4 Florida (2015) (71%, 183 Votes)
  • #1 UCLA (2003) (29%, 73 Votes)

Total Voters: 256

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Photo by Bryan Terry

Washington 2009 

A veteran squad led the Huskies to their first national championship in school history. Led by All-American Danielle Lawrie in the circle, Washington swept Florida in two games in the final series. UW went on the road for 30 days to earn the title the hard way, being forced to an if-game in the Amherst Regional and dropping and extra-inning Sunday night game to Georgia in the WCWS. In the third inning of Game 2 against the Gators, Morgan Stuart hit the ball off the end of her bat with the bases loaded. The tough spin proved to be too difficult to handle for Stacey Nelson allowing the go-ahead run to score. Lawrie shut out the Gators the remainder of the game bringing how the 21st title for the Pac-10 Conference.

Players To Note
Danielle Lawrie
Junior
Pitcher 

Lawrie sat out the previous season (2008) to complete for the Canadian National Team at the Olympic Games in Beijing, China. The seasoned veteran wasted no time picking right back up where she left off earning National Player of the Year honors and the Honda Award for Softball. The Women’s College World Series Most Outstanding Player finished the season 42-8 with a 0.97 ERA and 521 strikeouts.

Morgan Stuart
Sophomore 
Infielder

The breakout star went on a tear during UW’s championship run setting a Women’s College World Series record with four doubles. She also tied a WCWS hit record by going 5-5 against Georgia in the first semi-final game.  The sophomore batted .476 in the six games of the WCWS with a walk-off RBI single against Arizona State. The Riverside native led the team in RBI (37), doubles (16), and HBP (12).

By The Numbers
Head coach: Heather Tarr
Assistant Coach: Gina Carbonatto
Assistant Coach: Lance Glasco
Volunteer Assistant: J.T. D’Amico

Record: 51-12
Pac-12 Record: 14-7

Road to Oklahoma City

Amherst Regional
Vs. Sacred Heart, 9-1 (5) W
Vs. UMass 3-1 W
Vs. UMass 1-5 L
Vs. UMass 6-1 (15) W

Atlanta Super Regional
Vs. Georgia Tech, 7-1 W
Vs. Georgia Tech, 7-0 W

NCAA Women’s College World Series
Vs. Georgia 3-1 W
Vs. Arizona State 1-0 W (8)
Vs. Georgia 8-9 L (9)
Vs. Georgia 9-3 W
Vs. Florida 8-0 W
Vs. Florida 3-2 W


UCLA 1999 Softball Team

UCLA 1999

The top-ranked and top-seeded Bruins claimed their ninth national championship on May 31, knocking off No. 3 Washington 3-2, before 4,472 Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Julie Adams was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player with a two-RBI single in the top of the first to give the Bruins the early lead. Courtney Dale launched a solo shot in the 3rd to eventually seal the 3-2 victory. The win over Washington set a new school record for wins (63) previously held by UCLA’s 1990 championship team.

Players To Note: 

Julie Adams
Junior 
Infielder 

Adams put on one of the finest postseasons ever by a UCLA player. She batted .565 (13-for-23), with 15 RBIs, four home runs, a double and six runs scored. With these numbers, Adams was voted the Most Outstanding Player at both UCLA’s regional in Los Angeles and at the College World Series. All this, despite suffering a dislocated shoulder in the Bruins’ opening game of the CWS against DePaul. In the finals, Adams went 2-3 with three runs batted in.

Stacey Nuveman 
Junior 
Catcher 

Bruin slugger Stacey Nuveman finished the season ranked No. 1 in the Pac-10 in home runs (31), RBI (91) and batting (.446). She becomes the first player to lead the Pac-10 in those three categories since Arizona’s Jenny Dalton achieved the feat back in 1996 (.469BA, 25HR, 109RBI). Nuevman broke the UCLA career home run record in 1999, knocking out the 31st of her career in a game against Long Beach State and has been walked more than any other player in UCLA history.

By the numbers:

Coach: Sue Enquist, 11th Season
Assistant Coach: Kelly Inoye-Perez
Assistant Coach: Lisa Fernandez
Record: 63-6
PAC-10 record: 22-6

Road to OKC
NCAA Regionals – Los Angeles, Calif.
vs. Alabama, 7-10 W
vs. Creighton, 14-0 W
vs. Minnesota, 5-0 W
vs. Missouri, 12-5

NCAA Women’s College World Series
vs. Depaul 3-2, W
vs. Fresno State  1-0, W
vs. Depaul 2-1, W
vs. Washington, 3-2 W


2009 Washington vs 1999 UCLA

  • #6 Washington (2009) (70%, 152 Votes)
  • #10 UCLA (1999) (30%, 66 Votes)

Total Voters: 218

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