#11 UW 2, Portland State 1

SEATTLE - Bryana Walker capped a dominant three hit 13 strikeout performance with a swinging strikeout of Lauran Bliss as 11th ranked and seeded Washington began its quest for the 11th Women's College World Series berth in program history with a tight 2-1 win over Portland State in NCAA regional action at Husky Softball Stadium on a partly cloudy but breezy Friday evening.

Brittany Hendrickson began the top of the seventh inning with a groundout to first but Crysta Conn lined a double into the gap in left center field to put the tying run in scoring position. Alicia Fine grounded out to third for the second out, bringing up Bliss. Walker got ahead quickly ahead in the count 0-2, threw two balls, and then got Bliss to whiff at the next pitch to help the Huskies (39-15) advance to a winner's bracket game at 1 p.m. on Saturday against 20th ranked Hawaii (44-11).

The Rainbow Wahine beat Minnesota 3-0 in Game 1 of the regional.

Walker (15-7) came out firing in the first inning, striking out the side, all on swinging third strikes. She retired the first nine batters of the game before leadoff batter Carly McEachran stunned the crowd of 1,085 and gave the Vikings a 1-0 lead with a solo home run into the trees beyond the left field foul pole. After Hendrickson lined a single to right in the fourth, Walker proceeded to retire the next nine batters before Conn's double in the seventh.

Offensively the Huskies managed only one hit against Anna Bertrand (21-16), but it was a big one and gave the Huskies a 1-1 tie in the bottom of the fourth. Hooch Fagaly led off with a four pitch walk, one of six allowed by Bertrand. Marki Creger-Zier pinch ran for Fagaly. The next batter, Kaitlin Inglesby, took two more balls from Bertrand before lining the next pitch off the wall in right center to plate Creger-Zier with the tying run.

The Huskies took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth, loading the bases and scoring the go-ahead run without the benefit of a hit and capitalizing on a big error by Bertrand. Jennie McNeill led off with a walk. Kelli Suguro attempted to sacrifice but Bertrand bobbled the bunt for an error, putting runners at first and second. Victoria Hayward moved the runners up with a sacrifice and Fagaly walked to load the bases. Inglesby then stepped to the plate and lined a two strike pitch deep enough to center to score McNeill, who slid home just ahead of the the throw by Becca Bliss.

After the Washington-Hawaii game on Saturday, the Vikings will play Minnesota in a loser out game at 3:30 with the winner of that game then playing the loser of the Washington-Hawaii game in another elimination game at 6 p.m.

The survivor from Saturday's elimination games will then play the team that advances from the winner's bracket at 1 p.m. on Sunday for a spot in a best two of three Super-regional against the winner of the Columbia regional hosted by sixth seeded Missouri.

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