No. 1 seed LSU

MASCOT: Tigers

RECORD: 45-15

CONFERENCE: Southeastern

HOW THEY QUALIFIED: At-large

KEY PLAYERS: Bianka Bell (.395, 12 HRs, 58 RBIs, .691 slugging), Sandra Simmons (.369, 4 HRs, 7-of-10 stolen bases), Sahvanna Jaquish (.349, 12 HRs, 65 RBIs, .651 slugging), Carley Hoover (18-7, 2.37 ERA, 16 complete games, 194 strikeouts)

WHAT THEY’RE BEST AT: The Tigers are skilled in every facet and appear to be putting it together at the right time. Their pitching, however, is their strongest skill: The Tigers have the seventh-best ERA nationally (1.90), and freshman Sydney Smith’s surge has given them three reliable starters.

HOW THEY CAN ADVANCE: After winning 15 of their final 17 games, the Tigers are peaking. If they ride that wave of confidence and score some early runs, they should overpower the rest of the regional field.

FUN FACT: The Tigers have hosted a regional nine times, and this year marks the third time in the past four seasons they have done so.

NO. 2 SEED ARIZONA STATE

MASCOT: Sun Devils

RECORD: 30-24

CONFERENCE: Pac-12

HOW THEY QUALIFIED: At-large

KEY PLAYERS: Jennifer Soria (.363, 14 HRs, 41 RBIs, .708 slugging), Chelsea Gonzales (.325, 12 HRs, 47 RBIs), Abby Spiel (.320, 13 stolen bases), Kelsey Kessler (15-11, 3.04 ERA, 13 complete games, 175 strikeouts)

WHAT THEY’RE BEST AT: Despite a shaky bullpen behind Kessler, the Sun Devils pair crisp defense with an offense that averages 5.6 runs. They’re the best defensive team in the regional with a .970 fielding percentage.

HOW THEY CAN ADVANCE: Kessler has handled more than half the innings in the circle and will likely need to keep that pace going this weekend. If she can keep opposing offenses at bay, that gives power hitters Soria and Gonzales a chance to do some damage.

FUN FACT: ASU is one of just six Division I programs to win more than one Women’s College World Series. The Sun Devils captured the title in 2008 and 2011.

NO. 3 SEED McNEESE STATE

MASCOT: Cowgirls

RECORD: 42-12

CONFERENCE: Southland

HOW THEY QUALIFIED: Won tourney

KEY PLAYERS: Erika Piancastelli (.420, 21 HRs, .993 slugging), Marisa Taunton (.355, 60 hits, 22 stolen bases), Emily Vincent (16-3, 1.60 ERA, 13 complete games, 147 strikeouts), Jamie Allred (17-3, 1.71 ERA, four shutouts, 108 strikeouts)

WHAT THEY’RE BEST AT: Though they have the nation’s No. 2 home run hitter in Piancastelli, the Cowgirls’ pitching tandem of Vincent and Allred is their biggest strength. The senior duo has combined to allow only 65 runs in 275.1 innings with a 3.2-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

HOW THEY CAN ADVANCE: Vincent and Allred need to be at their best. If the offense can manufacture runs with Taunton and Vincent (21 SBs) or get enough out of Piancastelli, McNeese might turn its nine-game winning streak into much more.

FUN FACT: McNeese assistant athletic director/sports information director Matthew Bonnette is the younger brother of LSU SID Michael Bonnette.

NO. 4 SEED LIU BROOKLYN

MASCOT: Blackbirds

RECORD: 30-25

CONFERENCE: Northeast

HOW THEY QUALIFIED: Won tourney

KEY PLAYERS: Celinna Cosio (.342, 8 HRs, 39 RBIs), Whitney West (.372, 5 triples, 12 stolen bases), Erynn Sobieski (19-17, 3.05 ERA, 19 complete games, 145 strikeouts), Tallie Woodson (9-7, 4.06 ERA)

WHAT THEY’RE BEST AT: Sobieski and Woodson have pitched almost every inning while walking only 51 batters combined. They carried an offense that was one of the best in the NEC but stacks up poorly against the rest of the regional field.

HOW THEY CAN ADVANCE: With an offense that scores less than four runs per game, the Blackbirds will need masterful pitching and error-free play to stay in games. Long Island is far from a power-hitting team, so it’ll likely have to manufacture runs to stay afloat.

FUN FACT: LIU Brooklyn is one of two main campuses in the Long Island University system. The other main location, LIU Post, competes in Division II.

Marcus Rodrigue