University of Florida gymnasts Mackenzie Caquatto and Alaina Johnson and softball pitcher Hannah Rogers accepted the Capital One Cup Trophy on behalf of the entire Gator women’s athletics program on Wednesday night at the ESPY Awards. The Cup was presented by Gator great and five-time U.S. Olympian Dara Torres.
Earlier in the day we caught up with Capital One Cup advisor Jennie Finch – in town for the ESPY’s – to talk about softball, women’s sports and the Gator award. The six-foot tall Olympic gold medalist looked relaxed and beautiful – clearly comfortable with her professional softball career behind her and basking in the glow of motherhood and being an advocate/representative for women’s sports.
In order to claim its first women’s Capital One Cup, Florida totaled 152 points which led to a donation of $200,000 to UF to support student-athlete scholarships. Florida was followed in the Capital One Cup standings by UCLA (110 points) and Stanford (106 points).
Eight sports contributed to Florida’s winning total as the Gators won their first national championship in softball and repeated as champions in gymnastics. In addition, the Orange and Blue notched top-four finishes in indoor (T-3rd) and outdoor (fourth) track & field and a sixth-place finish for swimming & diving in NCAA Championships. UF also received points for placing among the top-10 in the final polls for lacrosse (fourth), tennis (fifth) and soccer (10th).
The softball team compiled a 10-1 NCAA Tournament record, including a 5-0 mark at the Women’s College World Series. Florida defeated Southeastern Conference rival Alabama two games to none in the championship series. The gymnastics team tied Oklahoma for the NCAA crown, marking the first shared national championship in the event’s 33-year history.
While in L.A., the winners took the Capital One Cup with them as they toured local landmarks. Caquatto (@WackoMackoo) tweeted this pic of the Gator Girls doing handstands with the trophy at the Santa Monica pier.
About the Cup: The Capital One Cup is awarded annually to each of the best men’s and women’s Division I college athletics programs in the country. Points toward the Capital One Cup are earned and tracked throughout the year based on final standings of NCAA Championships and final official coaches’ polls. One winning men’s and one winning women’s program are crowned after the completion of the final NCAA spring championships. Capital One awards a combined $400,000 in student-athlete scholarships and the Capital One Cup trophy is presented to the winning schools at the ESPY awards in July.