Oklahoma softball closed out its historically dominant season with even more dominance, sweeping Florida State in the 2023 Women’s College World Series finals en route to a third straight NCAA championship.

The Sooners (61-1) beat Florida State 3-1 on Thursday behind back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning, handing star FSU pitcher Kathryn Sandercock her first loss since March 12. They extended their own NCAA record winning streak to 53 games, with their last loss coming on Feb. 19.

With the win, Oklahoma also becomes just the second team to win three consecutive NCAA Division I softball titles, joining the UCLA Bruins, who did so in 1988-90. Yet despite their dominance throughout the season, the twin pressures of the winning streak and the championship streak weighed on the Sooners.

“What you feel right now from us is freedom, because it was absolutely suffocating as we’re going along,” Oklahoma coach Patty Gasso told ESPN on the field after the game. “The expectations were overwhelming, but they handled it like champions and that’s why we are here right now.”

Oklahoma’s bats contributed to the win, particularly the home runs from Cydney Sanders and Grace Lyons, but the pitching and defense did their part as well.

Oklahoma outfielder Jayda Coleman robbed a would-be three-run home run from FSU’s Kalei Harding in the third inning.

And Oklahoma took a 2-1 lead in the top of the fifth inning, Gasso put pitcher Jordy Bahl in the circle to hold onto it. Bahl had been lights out throughout the WCWS, and she retired all nine hitters she faced Thursday to secure the win.

“I don’t have a lot of words right now,” Bahl said in an interview with ESPN on the field after the game. “…We stick together. It’s not just one person who feels it, we all feel it. Sticking together is one of the toughest challenges this year.”

Oklahoma softball completed its Women’s College World Series three-peat Thursday night, sweeping Florida State to take its third consecutive title.

With the 3-1 victory against FSU, the Sooners finished the season on a 53-game winning streak. Check out more of the numbers behind their record-breaking season.


Oklahoma’s ERA ranked first in NCAA Division I by a wide margin. The next closest team, Central Arkansas, had a team ERA of 1.50. The Sooners’ pitching staff allowed just three runs across five games in the WCWS.


The Sooners became just the second team in NCAA softball history to win three WCWS titles in a row, joining the UCLA Bruins, who won the 1988, 1989 and 1990 titles. No team has won four in a row.


No other team in NCAA Division I averaged more than 6.87 runs per game. Oklahoma also led all D-I teams in batting average, home runs per game and slugging.


For the 11th time in 12 seasons, Oklahoma reached the WCWS. In that span, the Sooners have won six titles. The program has won seven overall.

24 ⅔

Sophomore ace Jordy Bahl tossed 24 ⅔ scoreless innings in the WCWS, including a complete-game shutout in the first game of the championship series against Florida State. She finished the WCWS with 33 strikeouts compared to just 12 hits allowed, earning her the Most Outstanding Player award.


With its sweep of Clemson in the super regionals, Oklahoma broke the NCAA softball record for consecutive wins, set by Arizona across the 1996-97 seasons. The Sooners kept the streak alive through the end of the season, finishing with 53 in a row and a 61-1 record.


Oklahoma has not lost in 109 days, since falling 4-3 against Baylor on Feb. 19. By the time the Sooners take the field again in 2024, they’ll have gone more than 300 days without a defeat.

The best college softball teams in the country competed at the 2023 NCAA Women’s College World Series at the USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, and for the third straight year, the Oklahoma Sooners came out on top.

No. 1 Oklahoma won its third consecutive NCAA title — and ended the season on a historic winning streak. Competition began on June 1 and continued through June 8.

Just Women’s Sports kept tabs on the action as it unfolds. See below for the full game schedule, and an explainer on how the Women’s College World Series bracket works.

Which teams are competing at the 2023 Women’s College World Series?

Sixty-four teams competed in the NCAA softball championship this spring, with eight ultimately qualifying for this week’s Women’s College World Series (WCWS).

In order to qualify for the WCWS, each team had to first make it through a four-team regional competition (featuring a double-elimination bracket), followed by a two-team super regional championship (featuring a best-of-three format).

These are the eight teams that qualified for the 2023 WCWS:

  • No. 1 Oklahoma
  • No. 3 Florida State
  • No. 4 Tennessee
  • No. 5 Alabama
  • No. 6 Oklahoma State
  • No. 7 Washington
  • No. 9 Stanford
  • No. 15 Utah

How does the bracket work at the Women’s College World Series?

The Women’s College World Series uses a double elimination bracket for the first stage, followed by a best-of-3 championship series.

Competition begins with the eight teams competing in a bracket. When a team loses its first game, it will be sent to the elimination bracket with a chance to play its way back into the main bracket. But when a team loses its second game, it is eliminated from contention.

The winner from each side of the bracket meets in the best-of-three championship series.

2023 Women’s College World Series — Schedule and Results

The Women’s College World Series began June 1 and continued through June 8. See below for a full schedule. All games were available on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC — in addition to streaming on ESPN+.

In the semifinals, Stanford faced off against Oklahoma and nearly pulled off a Game 1 upset. Stanford freshman sensation NiJaree Canady was lights out against the Sooner batters in their WCWS opener and pushed them to the brink again Monday, but Oklahoma won 4-2 in nine innings to advance to their fourth straight championship series.

Florida State also had entered the championship series undefeated, defeating Tennessee 5-1 in Monday’s other semifinal game. But FSU lost its only regular season meeting with Oklahoma, falling 5-4 on March 14.

In the opening game of the WCWS finals, Oklahoma claimed a dominant 5-0 win against FSU, led by pitcher Jordy Bahl’s complete game shutout. The Sooners closed out their third straight title with a 3-1 win, in which Bahl recorded a three-inning save.

June 1:

  • Game 1: Tennessee 10, Alabama 5
  • Game 2: Oklahoma 2, Stanford 0
  • Game 3: Florida State 8, Oklahoma State 0

June 2:

  • Game 4: Washington 4, Utah 1
    • Note: Originally scheduled for June 1, but postponed due to weather
  • Game 5: Stanford 2, Alabama 0
  • Game 6: Oklahoma State 8, Utah 0

June 3:

  • Game 7: Oklahoma 9, Tennessee 0
  • Game 8: Florida State 3, Washington 1

June 4:

  • Game 9: Stanford 1, Washington 0
  • Game 10: Tennessee 3, Oklahoma State 1

June 5:

  • Game 11: Oklahoma 4, Stanford 2 (9 innings)
    • Game 12 not needed after Stanford elimination
  • Game 13: Florida State 5, Tennessee 1
    • Game 14 not needed after Tennessee elimination

Championship Finals (Best of 3)
No. 1 Oklahoma vs. No. 3 Florida State

The Oklahoma softball team isn’t going to apologize for the energy they bring to the field.

On Tuesday, head coach Patty Gasso said that she tells her players to be “unapologetic” in the way they play the game, which includes celebrating walks.

“Because women have worked so hard to get here yet still get judged for those things,” Gasso said. “That’s the way we play, and that’s what people enjoy. Or you don’t. You either like it or you don’t, but we’re not going to apologize for these players knowing the game and celebrating the right way.”

The No. 1-ranked team in the country is riding an NCAA-record 51-game winning streak into the Women’s College World Series championship series beginning Wednesday against No. 3 Florida State, giving them plenty of reasons to celebrate.

The Sooners ran up against a tough test in the semifinals against star pitcher NiJaree Canady and Stanford, pulling out a win in extra innings on Monday while animatedly celebrating their victories, both big and small.

“We can’t satisfy anyone, and that’s not why we play this game,” said Oklahoma’s Alyssa Brito. “That’s not why we’re here doing what we’re doing is to satisfy anyone. So I think for me, I’m going to stay being who I am and stay true to who I am. And if that passion that I have offends anyone, it’s just kind of like, ‘OK, I’m not going to allow anyone to kind of change my game.'”

The players have noticed fans publicly criticizing their behavior, but center fielder Jayda Coleman said Tuesday that she’s stayed off social media during the tournament “because that would fire me up and maybe just want to do it even more.”

Coleman, tied for the team lead in home runs with 17, was named a First Team All-American this season. She noted that a double standard exists between celebrations in men’s and women’s sports — a debate that also came to the forefront after the women’s NCAA basketball championship game in April.

“I really don’t get it,” Coleman said. “I feel like we are continuously — and softball itself — are just breaking barriers. I’ve seen it with my own eyes, and I feel like it’s just very disappointing to just see people just trying to tear us down in that type of way.

“Maybe not tearing us down, but just kind of making it into a negative light when you’re seeing the MLB players do the exact same thing or the NBA or NFL, throwing their helmets and having emotion. Like, why can’t we have emotion? We are in the same stakes as them. We are athletes just like them. Why can we not wear our emotions on their sleeves?”

Sooners shortstop Grace Lyons added on Tuesday that the team’s celebrations have little to do with their opponents.

“What we do is to bring passion to our own circle, and it’s never against anyone else,” she said. “So, I just want to say that that’s not how we play. People may take it that way, but it’s all for our own joy and passion, never to tear down.”

Oklahoma is looking to win its third straight NCAA softball championship this week, with Game 1 against Florida State kicking off at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.

The NCAA softball super regionals are complete, with eight teams advancing to the Women’s College World Series.

Just Women’s Sports breaks down all eight matchups. Each best-of-three series was hosted by the higher seed.

Norman Super Regional — Norman, Oklahoma
No. 1 Oklahoma eliminates No. 16 Clemson, 2-0

  • Game 1: Oklahoma 9, Clemson 2
  • Game 2: Oklahoma 8, Clemson 7 (9)
  • Oklahoma advances to the Women’s College World Series

Oklahoma broke the record for longest winning streak in NCAA softball history with Saturday’s comeback win over Clemson, which marked the Sooners’ 48th win — besting the mark set by Alabama, which strung together 47 wins between 1996 and 1997. The two-time reigning champions have lost just one game all season, way back in February.

Tallahassee Super Regional — Tallahassee, Florida
No. 3 Florida State eliminates No. 14 Georgia, 2-0

  • Game 1: Florida State 8, Georgia 1
  • Game 2: Florida State 4, Georgia 2
  • Florida State advances to the Women’s College World Series

Florida State pitcher Kathryn Sandercock threw a perfect game to send her team to the super regionals. The ACC regular season and tournament title winners, the Seminoles sold out tickets for the super regional round in just one minute.

Knoxville Super Regional — Knoxville, Tennessee
No. 4 Tennessee eliminates No. 13 Texas, 2-0

  • Game 1: Tennessee 5, Texas 2
  • Game 2: Tennessee 9, Texas 0
  • Tennessee advances to the Women’s College World Series

While teams went undefeated in their regionals, the Volunteers advance to the WCWS, capping their super regionals sweep with a six-run seventh inning to close out a 9-0 win against the Longhorns.

Tuscaloosa Super Regional — Tuscaloosa, Alabama
No. 5 Alabama eliminates No. 12 Northwestern, 2-1

  • Game 1: Northwestern 3, Alabama 1
  • Game 2: Alabama 2, Northwestern 1
  • Game 3: Alabama 3, Northwestern 2
  • Alabama advances to the Women’s College World Series

Despite losing the first game, Alabama responded in games 2 and 3 to make it to their 14th WCWS. Northwestern landed plenty on base, but ultimately could not complete the series.

Stillwater Super Regional — Stillwater, Oklahoma
No. 6 Oklahoma State eliminates Oregon, 2-0

  • Game 1: Oklahoma State 8, Oregon 1
  • Game 2: Oklahoma State 9, Oregon 0
  • Oklahoma State advances to the Women’s College World Series

With the 2-0 series win, Oklahoma State will compete in the WCWS for a third straight year. Oregon was one of just three unseeded teams to make it to the super regional round.

Seattle Super Regional — Seattle, Washington
No. 7 Washington eliminates Louisiana, 2-0

  • Game 1: Washington 8, Louisiana 0 (5)
  • Game 2: Washington 2, Louisiana 0
  • Washington advances to the Women’s College World Series

Perhaps nobody had a crazier game entering the super regionals than Washington, who came back from down six runs in the final inning to win and advance. The Huskies then swept Louisiana with two shutouts to reach the WCWS.

Durham Super Regional — Durham, North Carolina
No. 9 Stanford eliminates No. 8 Duke, 2-0

  • Game 1: Stanford 3, Duke 1
  • Game 2: Stanford 7, Duke 2
  • Stanford advances to the Women’s College World Series

Stanford advances to its third WCWS in program history and its first since 2004. Alana Vawter picked up her 20th win for the Cardinal in Saturday’s series-clinching win.

Salt Lake City Super Regional — Salt Lake City, Utah
No. 15 Utah eliminates San Diego State, 2-1

  • Game 1: San Diego State 4, Utah 3
  • Game 2: Utah 10, San Diego State 1
  • Game 3: Utah 7, San Diego State 2
  • Utah advances to the Women’s College World Series

Everything went right for Utah on Sunday, as they took down San Diego State to advance to their first WCWS since 1994.

Two-time reigning Women’s College World Series champion Oklahoma is the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA softball tournament after going 51-1 on the season.

This year’s tournament marks the fourth straight in which the Sooners have held the top seed, and they’re looking to take their third consecutive title.

Ahead of the NCAA tournament, Oklahoma beat Texas to take the Big 12 tournament championship, confirming its status as the overwhelming favorite to take the national title again.

UCLA sits at No. 2 overall, and Florida State holds the No. 3 seed, followed by Tennessee, Alabama, Oklahoma State, Washington and Duke among the top eight seeds.

No. 9 Stanford, No. 10 LSU, No. 11 Arkansas, No. 12 Northwestern, No. 13 Texas, No. 14 Georgia, No. 15 Utah and No. 16 Clemson all round out the top 16, as well as the teams hosting regionals.

“The committee had to look at a lot of really good teams with good résumés, especially for the top eight,” selection committee chair Kelly Gatwood said on the selection show. “We really had to dig deep and look at top-10 wins that would help us differentiate.”

Oklahoma has lost just one game all season, on Feb. 18 at Baylor. It was the Sooners’ first loss since last year’s WCWS, when UCLA scored a 7-3 win against Oklahoma before the Sooners got their revenge in an elimination game.

“We have a very balanced lineup and a balanced team,” Sooners coach Patty Gasso said during the selection show. “It’s consistency, grit, hard work, clutch — all those things you need in the postseason.”

Oklahoma, which will face Hofstra in the first round, leads the nation with a team ERA of 0.86. The Sooners also lead the country in batting average (.368), on-base percentage (.463) and scoring (423 runs) and are second in homers (94).

UCLA could provide a challenge, led by Maya Brady, who has hit .458 on the season. The Bruins will host Grand Canyon in their opener.

Regionals run from May 19-21, with the super regionals set for May 25-28. The final eight teams left in the bracket will compete in the Women’s College World Series, which begins June 1 in Oklahoma City, with the finals June 7-9.

You can view the full NCAA bracket here.