MM20 The WinnersYour votes have been tallied, and the results are in!

Before we get to the big announcement, let’s look at back at our trip so far.

We started with sixteen boy names and sixteen girl names:


Maisie, Emmeline, Noa, Faye, Lumi, Esme, Marlowe, Tess, Juniper, Zuzu, Marlowe, Persephone, Andromeda, Sloane, Evolet, Vera


Zev, Cove, Torin, Reid, Arrow, Ridge, Caspian, Wilder, Deckard, Fox, Archie, Gray, Smith, Koa, Credence, Hayes

If that sounds like an eclectic list, it is! March Madness baby names come from the most popular posts at Appellation Mountain during the prior calendar year. And that looks nothing like any other Top Ten list you’ve seen!


Voting narrowed each contest down to just two finalists: Tess versus Marigold, and Caspian versus Reid.

Marigold had a strong start, but Tess clearly carried the day, winning almost 54% of the total.

On the boys’ side, the contest was much closer. Caspian garnered just over 51% of the vote. But that’s still enough to declare victory.

It feels a little lopsided to me. Many years, the winning names sound like siblings – even twins! But this year, Tess and Reid sound nicely matched. They’re spare and simple, not classic exactly, but certainly traditional. Caspian and Marigold lean fanciful, or maybe dramatic. It’s easy to imagine the same parents picking those two names for siblings.

But then again, we’re not voting to name a sister-brother duo. We’re picking our favorite names from the sixteen contenders. And this year, that distinction goes to Tess and Caspian.

They are the tenth set of names to earn the title, joining:

  • Nathaniel and Louisa in 2011
  • Arthur and Genevieve in 2012
  • Archer and Isla in 2013
  • Everett and Cora in 2014
  • Finn and Cora in 2015*
  • Theodore and Sylvie in 2016
  • Leo and Wren in 2017
  • Rowan and Eliza in 2018
  • Arlo and Margot in 2019

You’ll note that Cora appears twice. It’s not a typo! After back-to-back victories in 2014/2015, it was decided that past champions were retired from future years’ contests. So we’ll never seen Tess or Caspian in future years’ tournaments. (Runners-up, though, can continue to compete – until they win!)

Their next chance? That will come in March 2021 – just eleven months away!

What do you think of the March Madness baby names victors? Were these your favorites? Would you consider them for a daughter or a son?

March Madness Baby Names 2020: Boys MM20 Girls Champions

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. Somehow I can really see two characters in an adventure story called Tess and Caspian (of course, easier to do via Narnia).

  2. I voted for Reid and Tess. I have a 5 year old son named Reid. When I was choosing his name I did like the name Casper, so I can see why Caspian is appealing. I had a daughter one year ago and Tess was on my list.