- More than 1.7 Million Viewers for Two-Game WCWS Finals; Record Audience for Marathon, 17-Inning Game 1
- WCWS Finals Shatter Streaming Records
- Entire WCWS and Super Regionals See Audience Growth
The Oklahoma Sooners’ two-game sweep of the Florida Gators in the Women’s College World Series Finals (June 5-6 on ESPN) averaged a total live audience (TV + streaming) of 1,720,000 viewers, the most-watched sweep in Women’s College World Series Finals history*. The Sooner-Gators’ two games in the best-of-three format was up 33% from 2014, the last time the WCWS Finals failed to go to a decisive third game. This year’s two-game average was also up 33% over last season’s WCWS Finals first two games (June 6-7, 2016) featuring Oklahoma and Auburn. The Sooners won the series in three games.
WCWS Finals Game 1: Sooners-Gators Play in Longest Finals Game Ever
This season’s WCWS Finals saw Oklahoma and Florida play in the longest game in Women’s College World Series Finals history (June 5) when the first game of the series concluded after 17 innings. The instant-classic averaged a total live audience (TV + streaming) of 1,677,000 viewers, the most-watched WCWS Finals Game 1 ever. More on WCWS Game 1 is here.
WCWS Finals Shatter Streaming Records
The WCWS Finals set new WCWS streaming records in all three major metrics. The five-hour-plus WCWS Finals Game 1 saw more than 662,000 total users stream 15,000,000 total minutes, easily the highest ever for a WCWS Game. The second game surpassed more than 406,000 total users streaming nearly seven million minutes, the second-best ever for a WCWS game, trailing only the first game of the finals. The two WCWS Finals games also set new individual WCWS records for average minute streaming audience. To no surprise, all three categories and both games were significant increases from last year’s streaming audience.
Entire WCWS Sees Audience Growth
ESPN’s Women’s College World Series coverage – televised in its entirety by ESPN for the 17th straight year – averaged a total live audience of 984,000 viewers across the 14 games (June 1-6), up 21% from last year’s event (15 games, including a three-game WCWS Finals)
Additional WCWS Highlights
- Top Local Markets: Tulsa was the highest-rated local market throughout the 14-game WCWS, earning a 3.9 rating. Top five markets:
- National Semifinal Becomes Top 3 Game: Oklahoma vs. Oregon (June 4 on ESPN) had a total live audience of 1,249,000 viewers, a top 3 early-round WCWS game ever.
Super Regionals Deliver Super Audience
Prior to the WCWS, ESPN televised every game of the Super Regionals (21 games) from May 26-28, averaging 477,000 viewers for just its TV audience, up 34% from last year’s entire presentation (19 games). To begin the NCAA Division I Softball Championship, ESPN produced the entire regional round – 99 games from all 16 sites for the first time ever. The television games in that round averaged 301,000 viewers a game.
*Best-of-three WCWS Finals began in 2005; Sweeps occurred in 2006, ‘08, ‘09, ‘10, ‘11, ‘13, ‘14, and ‘17