The Bellevue University softball team will be heading to Oklahoma City on May 15-17 to compete in the NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round - Oklahoma City Bracket. The Bruins will open play on May 15 at noon against Simpson (Calif.) University at Ann Lacy Stadium.
The 23rd ranked Bruins received an at-large berth into the Opening Round after finishing the regular season with a 49-14 overall record and a 20-6 mark in the North Star Athletic Association. The Bruins were the NSAA regular season champions while finishing as runner-up in the NSAA Postseason Tournament.
The Opening Round consists of 10 four-team double-elimination tournaments across the country. The champions from each of the 10 opening round tournaments will advance to the 37th Annual NAIA Softball World Series in Clermont, Fla., from May 26 – June 1. These programs will participate in a double-elimination national championship at the Legends Way Ball Fields. Last year, Oklahoma City defeated Saint Xavier (Ill.), 5-0, in the "if necessary" game to claim the national title. The World Series bracket will be announced late in the day on May 17.
Participants in the Oklahoma City Opening Round site include: No. 1 Oklahoma City University, No. 2 Simpson (Calif.) University, No. 3 Bellevue University, and No. 4 Kansas Wesleyan University. The tournament will be hosted by Oklahoma City University.
Oklahoma City (61-1) is ranked No. 1 in the latest NAIA top 25 poll. Simpson (43-8) is ranked No. 17. Bellevue (49-14) is ranked No. 23.
Bellevue will be making its ninth appearance in the NAIA National Tournament and its sixth in the last eight years.
NAIA National Championship Opening Round
Oklahoma City Bracket | Ann Lacy Stadium
Monday, May 15
Game 1: No. 2 Simpson (Calif.) vs. No. 3 Bellevue (Neb.), noon
Game 2: No. 1 Oklahoma City vs. No. 4 Kansas Wesleyan, 3:00 p.m.
Tuesday, May 16
Game 3: Game 1 Winner vs. Game 2 Winner, noon
Game 4: Game 1 Loser vs. Game 2 Loser, 3:00 p.m.
Game 5: Game 3 Loser vs. Game 4 Winner, 6 p.m.
Wednesday, May 17
Game 6: Game 3 Winner vs. Game 5 Winner, noon
Game 7: If necessary, 3:00 p.m.