Baylor Bears

Baylor vs. Florida Softball: Gainesville Super Regional Preview and Prediction

Baylor Softball Aliyah Binford

The Gainesville Super Regional will get underway on Friday, May 24, as No. 4 Florida plays host to Baylor. The two programs will meet for just the 12th time and for the first time since 2018 (UF leads all-time, 7-4).

The Gators and Bears will play a best-of-three series to determine which of them will punch their ticket to Oklahoma City for the 2024 Women’s College World Series. Here’s everything you need to know before the matchup.


Florida Gators (49-12)

A month ago, Florida fans would’ve told you that you were nuts if you’d said the Gators looked like one of the four best teams in the country. However, that’s exactly what they’ve been since the beginning of May, riding an 11-game winning streak into the Super Regionals. The Gators won the SEC Tournament after finishing the regular season as the No. 2 seed and were rewarded with the No. 4 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament. Last week, in the Gainesville Regional, UF took care of business against FGCU (6-0) on Friday and then run-ruled South Alabama on Saturday, 9-1 (5 inn.). The Jaguars would battle and advance to face the Gators again on Sunday, but it ended with the same result: a 9-1 (5 inn.) for the Gators.


Baylor Bears (35-21)

Baylor had the unique honor of being the No. 4 team in the Big 12 in 2024, playing catch-up with Texas, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State all season in the league standings. After getting the No. 4 seed in the Big 12 Tournament, BU took down UCF (3-2) to advance to the semifinals. Unfortunately, they ran into Texas there, who trounced them to the tune of 14-3. Nonetheless, Baylor’s incredibly difficult schedule, combined with an impressive list of wins, landed the Bears the No. 2 seed in a favorable Lafayette Regional. After taking down Ole Miss (3-1) on Friday, Baylor would have to play host Louisiana three times over the next two days. On Saturday, the Bears dominated the Ragin’ Cajuns in an 8-0 victory, sending them to Sunday with a 2-0 record. That wouldn’t last, though, as UL came out firing and beat the Bears 13-0 to force Game 7 in the Regional. The final game came down to the wire, as Baylor escaped with a 4-3 victory to advance to their first Super Regional in seven years.



(Last 10: 10-0; 83 runs scored, 35 runs allowed)


  • Batting Avg: .342 (5th)
  • On Base %: .453 (3rd)
  • Runs Per Game: 8.00 (4th)
  • Slugging %: .604 (5th)


  • ERA: 2.76 (49th)
  • K/BB: 1.82 (105th)
  • Opp. Avg: .221
  • Fielding %: .976 (14th)
  • Errors: 36


(Last 10: 8-2; 54 runs scored, 38 runs allowed)


  • Batting Avg: .286 (82nd)
  • On Base %: .364 (97th)
  • Runs Per Game: 4.21 (150th)
  • Slugging %: .413 (111th)


  • ERA: 3.53 (132nd)
  • K/BB: 1.70 (128th)
  • Opp. Avg: .251
  • Fielding %: .968 (76th)
  • Errors: 51



  • Friday, May 24
    • Game 1: (4) Florida vs. Baylor | 11 a.m. | ESPN2
  • Saturday, May 25
    • Game 2: (4) Florida vs. Baylor | 10 a.m.
  • Sunday, May 26
    • Game 3 if necessary: TBD


Baylor Pitching Staff vs. Florida Offense

We will see two names in the circle for Baylor in this Super Regional matchup: RyLee Crandall (3.10 ERA) and Aliyah Binford (3.23 ERA). Crandall leads the Bears with 147.0 IP, with Binford just behind her at 143.0 IP. Kaci West, with 44.2 IP, is the third most-used pitcher on the staff, so we could see her in a pinch, but in all likelihood, its Crandall and Binford.

The offense they’ll face is not only red-hot as of the last few weeks but also rivals Texas and Oklahoma in terms of potency over the course of the season, statistically speaking. So, how did Crandall and Binford fare against those offensive juggernauts? In 30.2 IP, the duo surrendered 62 hits and 48 runs (46 earned), with 21 BBs and 23 Ks. In other words, not good.


If you are looking at the statistics and trying to find any way possible for Baylor to make this a series, you and I are in the same boat. Yet, here we are with just 16 teams in the country left playing, and the Bears are one of them. How? Simply put, they’re battle-tested. According to D1Softball, the Bears have played the third-most difficult schedule in college softball. and the seventh-most difficult nonconference slate (16-7). With that being said, how will they fare in Gainesville?

I want to pick the Bears to pull off the upset. But when I look at the facts, it’s pretty obvious that Florida is far and away the better team–they are vastly superior offensively and more than marginally better defensively and in the circle.

When Baylor has played offenses with similar firepower to what Florida possesses this year, they’ve gone 0-7, with an average score of 3.3-10.4. The duo of RyLee Crandall and Aliyah Binford have a combined ERA of 10.50 against OU and Texas this year, and the Gators can score runs as well as the Sooners and Longhorns. Baylor’s run comes to an abrupt end in Gainesville at the hands of Florida.

Prediction: Florida wins the series, 2-0

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