• Baylor softball headed to NCAA tournament for 15th time in 19 seasons

    Baylor softball celebrates a home run

    All year long, Baylor Softball made it clear they deserved to be named among the nation’s best. Now, they’ll get the chance to prove it further in the NCAA tournament.

    The Bears were selected as the No. 2 seed in the Salt Lake City Regional, hosted by the No. 15 overall seed, the Utah Utes of the Pac-12. For the Bears, it was clear their stellar regular season — a 39-16 record and a No. 16 national ranking — had earned a tournament bid, but there was drama around where they might go. Falling just short of hosting, the committee recognized them as one of the top No. 2 seeds in the nation, sending them to the No. 15 national seed site.

    Records and rankings only tell part of the story on this year’s team. Head coach Glenn Moore’s squad won six games against top-5 opponents this year, the most in program history. In just the season’s second weekend, Baylor handed No. 1-ranked Oklahoma what would prove to be their only loss all year. Proving that was no outlier, the Bears swept No. 4 Tennessee in Knoxville in April, and swept No. 5 Texas in the final regular season weekend of the year.

    And as they racked up wins, they did so with style. History was made in February when junior pitcher Dariana Orme threw the first seven-inning perfect game in program history, and she followed that up with a no-hitter a week later against No. 21 Maryland.

    The team was led by Orme on the mound and sophomore Shaylon Govan at the plate. Both were named to the All-Big 12 team along with pitcher RyLee Crandall, who was named to the All-Freshman team. Govan ranked in the top 10 in the Big 12 in batting average, home runs and RBIs, while Orme was top 10 in wins, ERA and strikeouts. They were joined by their head coach among Big 12 honorees; after earning his 1,000th career win as a head coach earlier this year, Moore claimed his first Big 12 Coach of the Year award since coming to Baylor in 2000.

    This year marks the 15th time in the last 19 seasons that Baylor has reached the NCAA tournament — all under Moore. They’ll begin their run against Ole Miss Friday at 3 p.m. in Salt Lake City.

    Sic ’em, Baylor Softball!