Pac-12 Softball Weekly Rundown – May 22, 2024

Arizona, Stanford and UCLA will represent the Conference in the Super Regionals this week. The Pac-12 has sent three or more teams to Super Regionals in each of the last 19 opportunities. 

Making its 17th Super Regional, Arizona has reached the Women’s College World Series 25 times in its history, including three times in the last four opportunities (2019 and 2021-22). Stanford is making its eighth Super Regional appearance, and is looking to reach the Women’s College World Series in back-to-back years for the first time in program history and fourth overall. The Bruins are eyeing their NCAA-record 32nd Women’s College World Series appearance, and their eighth in the last nine Tournaments. 

37 Pac-12 players earned NFCA All-Region honors, the second most among all leagues (SEC – 44). 

  • Arizona: Olivia DiNardo (Third Team), Dakota Kennedy (First Team), Carlie Scupin (Third Team), Regan Shockey (First Team), Aissa Silva (Second Team) & Allie Skaggs (First Team).
  • Arizona State: Tanya Windle (Third Team).
  • California: Tatum Anzaldo (First Team), Haylei Archer (Third Team), Tianna Bell (Third Team), Elon Butler (First Team) & Lagi Quiroga (First Team).
  • Oregon: Ariel Carlson (Second Team), Alyssa Daniell (Second Team), Hanna Delgado (Third Team), Kai Luschar (First Team), Morgan Scott (Second Team), Paige Sinicki (Second Team) & Vallery Wong (Third Team).
  • Stanford: NiJaree Canady (First Team), Emily Jones (Third Team), Taryn Kern (Third Team) & Regan Krause (First Team).
  • UCLA: Maya Brady (First Team), Megan Grant (Second Team), Sharlize Palacios (First Team), Kaitlyn Terry (Second Team) & Taylor Tinsley (First Team).
  • Utah: Aliya Belarde (Third Team), Abby Dayton (First Team), Haley Denning (First Team) & Mariah Lopez (First Team).
  • Washington: Rylee Holtorf (First Team), Alana Johnson (Third Team), Ruby Meylan (First Team), Brooke Nelson (First Team) & Sydney Stewart (Third Team).

Quick Hits

  • Canady is one of three finalists for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award.
  • The Pac-12 (.728) has the third-highest non-conference regular-season Division I winning percentage among all other leagues, trailing just the SEC (.816) and the Big 12 (.764).
  • Stanford’s Canady is averaging a NCAA-best 13.3 strikeouts per seven innings during this NCAA Tournament.
    • Canady is averaging 10.9 K/7 in 2024 which also leads the nation, and her 0.52 ERA is also tops.
  • Arizona’s Kennedy posted a 1.625 slugging percentage during the Regional round, which is the highest in the country.
    • The sophomore is batting .500 (4-for-8) with five runs scored, five batted in and three home runs in three NCAA Tournament games so far this season.
  • Pac-12 Player of the Year Maya Brady has reached base in 14 straight games. Brady is hitting .533 (24-for-45) during this streak with 23 runs scored, 26 Rbi, five home runs and six walks, and the Bruins are 13-1.
  • Arizona is 22-11 all-time against Oklahoma State, having last faced the Cowgirls in the WCWS in 2022 (L, 4-2). The Wildcats are 8-2 their last 10 against Oklahoma State.
  • Stanford has won four of seven all-time against the Tigers, with three of those wins coming while the Cardinal was ranked in the NFCA top-25.
  • The Bruins have faced Georgia 17 times (15-2 all-time record), including seven times in the NCAA Tournament, going 6-1 in those matchups. Most recently UCLA topped the Bulldogs, 5-2 back in 2010 to advance to the WCWS en route to its 11th NCAA title.

Rankings Rundown

  • USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Poll:No. 6 UCLA, No. 8 Stanford, No. 13 Washington, No. 17 Arizona, and No. 21 California. Oregon and Utah are receiving votes.
  • D1Softball: No. 5 UCLA, No. 6 Stanford, No. 14 Washington, No. 16 Arizona, No. 22 Oregon and No. 24 California.
  • Softball America: No. 6 UCLA, No. 7 Stanford, No. 15 Washington, and No. 22 Arizona.
  • Softball: No. 6 UCLA, No. 8 Stanford, No. 15 Washington, No. 19 Arizona, No. 22 Oregon and RV California.
  • NCAA RPI Rankings (through 5/11): No. 5 Stanford, No. 10 UCLA, No. 21 Arizona, No. 22 California, No. 26 Washington, No. 31 Oregon, No. 39 Utah, No. 78 Oregon State and No. 85 Arizona State.

Conference Notebook

  • Arizona: Aissa Silva has tossed 8.2 scoreless innings in the NCAA Tournament so far, the fourth-most innings pitched by a player without allowing an earned run in the event. Silva has struck out seven batters and earned one win and one save in three appearances for the Wildcats.
  • Stanford: The Cardinal ranks eighth nationally in team ERA at 1.82. Stanford boasts three pitchers with sub-3.00 ERAs (minimum five appearances), including the NCAA leader Canady who has a 0.52 ERA (the lowest by a Pac-12 pitcher since UCLA’s Keira Goerl in 2002). The Cardinal has allowed two or fewer runs in postseason play four times this season (twice in each the Pac-12 Tournament and the NCAA Tournament).
  • UCLA: The Bruins have won 11 in a row which is tied for the longest-active streak in NCAA DI (Duke and Florida are also on 11-game streaks). UCLA is averaging eight runs a game during this run, as well as 9.82 hits, 1.45 home runs and 3.82 walks per game.

Additions & Returners

  • Every Pac-12 program was ranked in the top-45 of Extra Inning Softball’s 2023 team recruiting rankings: No. 7 Washington, No. 8 UCLA, No. 9 Arizona, No. 13 Oregon, No. 31 Stanford, No. 33 Arizona State, No. 34 California, No. 44 Oregon State, No. 45 Utah.
  • The Pac-12 returns 12 First-Team All-Conference members from a season ago: Tatum Anzaldo (CAL); Aliya Belarde (UTAH), Brady (UCLA), NiJaree Canady, (STAN), Abby Dayton (UTAH), Megan Grant (UCLA), Dakota Kennedy (ARIZ), Mariah Lopez (UTAH), River Mahler (STAN), Ruby Meylan (WASH), Allie Skaggs (ARIZ) and Jordan Woolery (UCLA).
  • Six 2023 NFCA All-Americans will suit up for Pac-12 teams this year: Brady, Grant, Taryn Kern, Lopez, Woolery & Meylan.
    • Stanford added 2023 NFCA Second Team All-American Kern this offseason, who transferred in from Indiana.

PowHER of the PAC

  • All nine Pac-12 softball programs are led by female head coaches.
  • Six of nine are leading their alma maters: Jessica Allister, STAN; Amy Hogue, UTAH; Kelly Inouye-Perez, UCLA; Caitlin Lowe, ARIZ; Chelsea Spencer, CAL; Heather Tarr, WASH.

Preseason Coaches Poll

  • Stanford received seven first-place votes and 63 total points to finish atop the 2024 preseason coaches poll for the first time in Pac-12 history. Reigning regular-season champion UCLA was second with 54 points, while Utah came in third with 49 points and one first-place vote. Washington grabbed the remaining first-place vote and 45 points to finish fourth. 2023 Pac-12 Player of the Year and Batting Champion Brady of UCLA headlined the 20-member Preseason All-Pac-12 Team. 

Historically Speaking

  • The nation’s most successful softball conference, Pac-12 programs have combined to win 24 of the 41 NCAA softball championships all-time, 17 more than the next closest league, and all nine Pac-12 teams have made appearances in the Women’s College World Series. Of the 13 different programs to have won an NCAA softball championship, five are from the Pac-12: UCLA (12), Arizona (8), Arizona State (2), California (1) and Washington (1). The Pac-12 sent six teams to the NCAA Tournament a season ago, with three teams advancing to the Women’s College World Series, the most of any other conference. 

2024 NCAA Tournament Schedule (subject to change) 

DateTimeMatchupHow to WatchTalent
Thurs., May 236:30p PT / 7:30p MTNo. 14 Georgia at No. 6 UCLA 
Los Angeles Regional
ESPN2Courtney Lyle, Danielle Lowrie
Fri., May 245p PT / 6p MTNo. 17 Arizona at No. 5 Oklahoma State 
Stillwater Regional
ESPNUMark Neely, Carol Bruggeman
 7p PT / 8p MTNo. 14 Georgia at No. 6 UCLA 
Los Angeles Regional
TBAChuckie Kempf, Monica Abbott
 7p PT / 8p MTNo. 11 LSU at No. 8 Stanford 
Stanford Regional 
ESPNUMike Couzens, Kenzie Fowler
Sat., May 254p PT / 5p MTNo. 17 Arizona at No. 5 Oklahoma State 
Stillwater Regional
TBAMark Neely, Carol Bruggeman
 6p PT / 7p MTNo. 11 LSU at No. 8 Stanford 
Stanford Regional 
TBAMike Couzens, Kenzie Fowler
 TBA – If NecessaryNo. 14 Georgia at No. 6 UCLA 
Los Angeles Regional
TBACourtney Lyle, Danielle Lowrie
Sun., May 26TBA – If NecessaryNo. 17 Arizona at No. 5 Oklahoma State 
Stillwater Regional
TBAMark Neely, Carol Bruggeman
 TBA – If NecessaryNo. 11 LSU at No. 8 Stanford 
Stanford Regional 
TBAMike Couzens, Kenzie Fowler

Pac-12 Standings (Full Standings)

No. 6 UCLA17-4-040-10-0
No. 8 Stanford17-7-046-14-0
No.13 Washington13-10-032-15-0
RV Oregon13-10-030-21-0
No. 17 Arizona13-11-037-16-1
RV Utah10-13-035-22-0
No. 21 California9-13-037-19-0
Oregon State9-15-021-29-0
Arizona State3-21-020-31-0

Pac-12 Softball Weekly Awards

Feb. 12Ariel Carlson, ORENiJaree Canady, STANJadyn Glab, WASH
Feb. 19Elon Butler, CALRuby Meylan, WASHRegan Shockey, ARIZ
Feb. 26Maya Brady, UCLATaylor Tinsley, UCLARegan Shockey, ARIZ
March 4Jillian Celis, WASHNiJaree Canady, STANAva Gall, STAN
March 11Maya Brady, UCLANiJaree Canady, STANPaige Doerr, OSU
March 18Sharlize Palacios, UCLARegan Krause, STANKaitlyn Terry, UCLA
March 25Acacia Anders, CALMorgan Scott, OREKaitlyn Terry, UCLA
April 1Rylee Holtorf, WASHNiJaree Canady, STANSidne Peters, WASH
April 8Aliya Belarde, UTAHLogan Hulon, OSURegan Shockey, ARIZ
April 15Olivia DiNardo, ARIZMariah Lopez, UTAHAva Gall, STAN
April 22Kaiah Altmeyer, ARIZTaylor Tinsley, UCLARegan Shockey, ARIZ
April 29Sharlize Palacios, UCLANiJaree Canady, STANShonty Passi, UTAH
May 6Maya Brady, UCLARegan Krause, STANLagi Quiroga, CAL

– –