2022 National Invitational Softball Championship

Baylor Wins NISC Crown, Binford Named MVP

Baylor Wins NISC Crown, Binford Named MVP

Aliyah Binford was named National Invitational Softball Championship MVP, and her complete-game shutout of UNLV sealed the 2022 title for the Baylor Bears.

May 27, 2022 by Kyle Kensing
Baylor Wins NISC Crown, Binford Named MVP

Aliyah Binford concluded her MVP run in spectacular fashion, as her complete-game shutout of UNLV sealed the Baylor Bears 2022 National Invitational Softball Championship title.

Binford was dominant in Thursday's championship round, giving up just two hits, while striking out nine in the 4-0 Baylor win. She also doubled to complete both an outstanding season at the dish, and an impressive NISC. 

She delivered at least one hit in three of Baylor's four games - all wins - including a critical home run to ignite the semifinal rally against Kansas. 

With Binford locking up MVP in the circle, Kaci West and Josie Bower took care of business at the plate. West went 3 for 4, including a triple that set the stage for Bower's clutch, two-run double in the fifth inning. 

Bower capped off quite a couple of days. Her base hit on Thursday gave Baylor breathing room as it capped off its championship, but the Bears wouldn't have been in the title round without her game-winning at-bat against Kansas on Wednesday. 

West finished on the NISC All-Tournament Team to put a bow on her impressive freshman season. She knocked three hits in each of the final three games to earn her spot among the individual honorees. 

Baylor also landed McKenzie Wilson and Ana Watson on the all-tournament roster. Watson produced nine RBIs over the course of the tournament and belted a pair of home runs against North Alabama. 

Wilson delivered hits in every game of the NISC, giving her 70 for the campaign. 

Each of BU's all-tournament honorees are underclassmen, so be prepared to pencil the Bears into your 2023 preseason Top 25. While the pursuit of more hardware a season from now is likely, they add an impressive piece to the trophy case as punctuation to 2022. 

And, while UNLV fell short of winning the NISC title, the Rebels close 2022 winners of 43 games. UNLV's excellent season ends with a trio of Rebels - Mia Trejo, Denise Armendariz and Jenny Bressler - earning All-Tournament nods. 

Armendariz's towering home run was effectively the game-winning swing in the semifinals. She also drove in a pair of runs in the win over North Alabama. Trejo helped key UNLV's defense throughout the NISC, and Bressler pitched 21 ? innings with seven total earned runs allowed and 17 batters fanned.