May 24, 2003
UCLA senior shortstop Natasha Watley upped her career postseason batting average to .364 (39-for-107) and her career WCWS average to .365 (19-for-52) with a 4-for-6 performance in two games today. Watley is hitting .384 (10-for-26) during the 2003 postseason, including .500 (6-for-12) during in the 2003 WCWS. The Bruins' leadoff hitter has also scored three of UCLA's 10 WCWS runs.
Washington fell to 42-18 all-time in 10 postseason appearances, including a 30-8 mark in regional play and a 13-10 record at the WCWS. The Huskies went 5-2 in postseason play this season, during which they outscored their opponents 40-6.
Huskies junior Amanda Oleson extended her hitting streak to six games tonight by going 1-for-3.
Huskies freshman Aimee Minor hit her sixth home run of the season to tie the game in the top of the fifth inning. Minor finished second on the UW squad with seven postseason hits.
UCLA has won five straight games against Washington. In their four games against the Huskies this year, the Bruins have outscored UW by a 28-3 margin.
UCLA senior third baseman Tairia Mims picked up her 10th career postseason home run, which leads all current Bruins, with one out in the sixth inning. Mims also leads the Bruins with 27 career postseason RBIs. Mims' homer was her 22nd of the season, which ranks as the second-best single-season total in UCLA history (Stacey Nuveman hit 31 in 1999). Mims is also second on the Bruins' career home run list with 61 (Nuveman hit 90 in her career). Mims went 4-for-6 today with two home runs and three RBIs. She is hitting .600 (6-for-10) with a home run in each WCWS game and six RBIs.
UCLA improved to 9-4 this season when their opponent hits a home run.
Keira Goerl picked up a pair of complete-game wins today and stands at 37-7 on the season. She has started each of UCLA's seven postseason games this month and is 6-1.
Mims' home run tied the mark for most home runs by a field in WCWS history with 16 (originally set during the 2000 WCWS). A minimum of three games remains for the field to set a new long ball record. Eighteen percent (16-of-87) of the hits in this year's series have been homers.
The home team is just 3-7 in the 2003 WCWS (UCLA was the home team against Washington tonight).
UCLA advances to Game 12 Sunday at 2:30 p.m. against No. 3 seed Texas. UCLA (4-0) owns a perfect all-time series record with the Longhorns. The Bruins beat Texas and 2003 USA Softball Player of the Year Cat Osterman in 2002 by a score of 14-0 at the Fiesta Bowl Classic in Phoenix, Ariz. Osterman gave up eight earned runs in just 1.2 innings of work.
Washington is eliminated from the 2003 WCWS and finishes the 2003 season with a 47-16-1 record.
Of the four remaining teams in the 2003 WCWS, only Texas has not won a NCAA softball national championship. Cal won in 2002, UCLA has won nine national championships (most recently in 1999) and Arizona has earned six national championships (most recently in 2001).