Baylor Softball Draws Eugene Regional Bid for NCAA Tournament

Posted at 2:50 PM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-16 15:50:33-04

WACO, Texas – The Baylor softball team (43-12) secured its sixth-straight NCAA Tournament bid, paired in the Eugene, Ore. Regional hosted by the No. 5 Oregon Ducks. The Lady Bears will face Long Beach State (32-20) on Friday, May 15 at 8:00 p.m. CT/6:00 p.m. PT.

The Ducks (44-8) will follow with an 10:30 p.m. CT/8:30 p.m. PT matchup with Fordham (39-19), with both games airing on ESPNU and the WatchESPN app.

Baylor, ranked No. 16 by USA Softball and No. 21 by the NFCA, finished the season at 43-12 and second place in the Big 12 with a 13-4 record. With a No. 13 ranking in the most recent NCAA RPI record, the Lady Bears ended up left out of the top-16 teams to earn a hosting opportunity for the first round.

“First of all I'm very disappointed we didn't get to host,” said Baylor head coach Glenn Moore. “I thought we had solidified that or had a really good chance at it. We have a pretty good resume. The girls had really played well down the stretch.”

Baylor has faced Long Beach State just once before, a 7-1 neutral site loss in 2011. The Lady Bears have never faced Fordham, but hold a 6-2 all-time series advantage over Oregon. Most recently, the two squads split a two-game set in Waco in 2015, including a walk-off victory over the then-No. 2 Ducks. 

“I know Oregon is good, we had them here last year,” said Moore. “We saw their ace here last year. She's considered by many to be the top pitcher in the country, but we've got one to match up with her.”

The first round begins Friday and will carry through Sunday until a team emerges to be sent to the next round at the NCAA Super Regional Tournament.

“We'll get our team prepared and go out there and try to win a regional,” said Moore. “We're playing the best ball we've played all year, and that's what you want as a coach. We finished the season playing really well. We just need to take that into postseason.”

Baylor's all-time postseason record is 38-23, and the Lady Bears are coming off a 2015 NCAA appearance in the Lafayette Regional, falling to the Ragin’ Cajuns in the region’s final.

In its 11 postseason appearances Baylor will be traveling for the eighth time to begin the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Bears are 27-17 all-time in postseason games away from Waco and Getterman Stadium.