The Gators advanced to their 12th WCWS appearance with a 5-3 win over Baylor.

Florida jumped out to an early lead, scoring a pair of runs in the first two innings to knock starter RyLee Crandall out of the game. Nine-hole hitter Mia Williams blasted an opposite-field two-run homer to double the lead to 4-0.


Two-run homer for the freshman

📺 ESPNU | @Miawilliams2023

— Gators Softball (@GatorsSB) May 26, 2024

Aliyah Binford entered in the bottom of the second and tossed 4.2 innings of relief. The Baylor senior kept the Bears within striking distance all game long, showing incredible grit allowing just two runs.

Florida looked poised to break it open in the third with the bases loaded. Binford struggled to locate the zone and walked in the fifth run of the ballgame. Baylor head coach Glenn Moore challenged the runner leaving early at second on the walk, and the runner was called out after review. Binford then walked the batter as the at-bat continued, but escaped the inning with a line drive double play back to the circle.

Baylor used some momentum from the bases-loaded stop as Binford drove a base hit down the left-field line and took second on an error. Sydney Collazos’ single to left-center scored the Bears’ first run of the game to make it a 4-1 ballgame.

The Bears didn’t go quietly. In the top of the fifth, Emily Hott blasted a two-run home run to deep right field, bringing the Bears within one run, 4-3.

The Gators punched back in the bottom of the inning, scoring an important insurance run on an Ariel Kowalewski sacrifice fly to center field to extend the lead back to two.

Keagan Rothrock neutralized a seventh-inning threat and tossed the complete game victory for the Gators picking up her 30th win of the year.

The Gators advance to the WCWS and will play Oklahoma State in their first game. The two squared off back in February as the Cowgirls won 3-0 in Gainesville.