History & Fun Facts
• In 1982, the first NCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Championship was held in Florida. North Carolina shutout Central Florida for the title 2-0. The Tar Heels have won a total of 20 championships to date, the most in NCAA women’s soccer history.
• The NCAA Division I women's soccer bracket started out as just 12 teams and remained in that format for 11 years, with the exception of the 1984 and 1985 seasons when the bracket was briefly expanded to 14 teams. In 1993, the bracket grew to 16 teams and throughout the years 24, 32, 48 and finally, 64 teams (2001-present).
• Currently, the top-16 teams in the bracket are seeded in pods of four (four No. 1 seeds, four No. 2 seeds, etc.). Thirty teams receive automatic qualification to the tournament by winning their respective conference titles. The remaining 34 teams are selected on an at-large basis.
• Four championship games have been decided in overtime. The first champion determined in overtime was Notre Dame in 1995. The Fighting Irish defeated Portland 1-0 in triple overtime. The following year North Carolina beat Notre Dame 1-0 in double overtime. In 2002, Portland knocked off Santa Clara 2-1 in double overtime, and most recently, Notre Dame defeated UCLA on penalty kicks in 2004. That game still stands as the only championship to be determined by penalty kicks.
• North Carolina has won an unprecedented 21 of the 31 NCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Championships. Highlights include capturing the sport’s first two titles in 1982 and 1983 and winning nine consecutive championships from 1986-1994. North Carolina won back-to-back championships in 2008 and 2009 and captured the title in 2012.
• The highest attended championship game in NCAA Women’s College Cup history occurred in 1999 in San Jose, Calif. 14,410 fans watched North Carolina defeat Notre Dame 2-0.
• In 2006, the NCAA celebrated 25 years of the Women’s College Cup. The championship was hosted in Cary, N.C., and members of the 25th Anniversary team were honored.
• In 2011, Kennasaw served as host of the Women’s College Cup. It was the first national championship held in the state of Georgia. Stanford claimed its first NCAA title, defeating Duke 1-0.
• In 2013, the Women’s College Cup will be held in Cary, N.C. It marks the 16th time that the championship has been held in the state of North Carolina. Cary has hosted the championship five times (2003-04, 2006, 2010).