March Madness Baby Names 2023 Girls FinalOkay, yes, there’s another March Madness tournament happening right now.

But THIS is the finals match that you cannot miss: the two girls’ names that your votes have advanced from the sweet sixteen to big showdown.

First, a recap.

March Madness Baby Names debuted in 2011.

Sixteen boy names and sixteen girl names are chosen from the most viewed posts on Appellation Mountain during the prior calendar year. (They’re seeded accordingly – the most viewed name is the #1 seed.) It’s your votes that advance them through the rounds.

And AM readers? Choose some fabulous names.


  • 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
  • Caspian and Tess in 2020
  • Raphael and Magnolia in 2021
  • August and Marigold in 2022

*After Cora won back-to-back years, readers voted to automatically exclude any past winner from future rounds of competition.

The winning names also lean fairly mainstream – at least compared to the eclectic set that starts out in the opening rounds.


  1. JAMES
  2. RUE
  3. LILA
  4. NAVY
  5. NOA
  6. BETTY
  9. FAYE
  10. POLLY
  12. POPPY
  13. ZELLA
  15. MAISIE
  16. GEMMA

You can read the full list here.

And yes, James is – traditionally and predominantly – a boys’ name. But there’s a post on the site called James (for a Girl). And that’s the post that topped the most-viewed list in 2022.

Your votes narrowed the list from 16 to eight to four … and now to just two.


With almost 63% of the total, Gemma bested Poppy to advance. Both names are current favorites. They sound like sisters, don’t they? But it’s Gemma that continues to the Final Round.

In a nail-biter of a match-up, Maisie slipped past Lila with not quite 52% of the tally. Again, two powerfully popular names made for a tough decision. For what it’s worth, Maisie made it all the way to the final match in 2021, before falling to Magnolia.


That means it’s time to vote – one last time!


Thank you for voting!

Polls stay open through Friday, March 31st. Check back on Saturday, April 1st to see which names take home the prize!

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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