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van der Linden, Florida State Eliminate Washington from WCWS

Oklahoma City, Okla. -- A two-run homerun by Florida State’s Tatiana George was all the Seminoles needed to defeat the Washington Huskies 2-0 at the Women’s College World Series. 

The USA Softball Collegiate Softball Player of the Year, Jessica Van der Linden, struggled early but finished the day strong with 10 strikeouts to eliminate the Huskies. 

“What a great game. Washington did a good job of attacking and we did a good job of defending,” said Florida State head coach Jo Anne Graf. “We weren’t ready to go home yet.” 

The Seminoles and Huskies both finished the day with four hits, but it was George’s two-run shot in the fourth that made the difference. 

“One of my goals today was to be patient, let the ball get there, and just see it,” said George. “I wasn’t expecting a home run, but it was nice to make solid contact finally.” 

“We had been struggling with the four through eight hitters, so we moved Tatiana to the six spot to shake things up,” said Graf. “Tatiana (George) was kind of stroking the ball and hitting it pretty solid, so we wanted to move her up and some other people down.” 

A bright spot for the Huskies today was the performance of shortstop Amanda Oleson. Oleson counted for two of the four Huskies’ hits, extending her hitting streak to five games. 

“We started out hot, but had seven strikeouts with runners in scoring position,” said Washington co-head Steve Dailey. “We set the table to blow this game wide-open early, and we didn’t take advantage of it.” 

Washington loaded the bases in the bottom of the first with one out, but van der Linden struck out the next two batters to get out of the early jam. 

“I don’t feel like I have my A-game back since the regional, but it’s close,” said van der Linden. 

After going 2-for-2 at the plate today, van der Linden is now 4-for-5 five at the plate in the WCWS, and is now batting .400 for the season. 

Florida State will face LSU tonight at eight in Saturday’s final game in a rematch of the NFCA Leadoff Classic championship game. 

Notes from the Diamond 

- This was the second meeting of the season between Washington and Florida State. In two games versus Washington Van der Linden has recorded 24 strikeouts. 

- FSU is now 10-1 in games right after a loss this season. 

- Making their seventh appearance at the Women’s College World Series, the Huskies fell to 13-12 all time. UW is now 3-4 in second-round games. 

- FSU is now 6-13 all-time at the WCWS. FSU posted its fourth shutout of the 2004 NCAA postseason. 

- Van der Linden has accountd for four of the Seminoles’ six hits in the 2004 WCWS. 

- Today’s game marked the lowest combined hit total (eight) for a game in the 2004 WCWS and it tied the lowest combined run total (UCLA beat LSU 2-0 on Friday)