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Sox fan hits Game 1 ticket jackpot
10/23/2004 11:23 PM ET
BOSTON -- Minutes after the Boston Red Sox beat the New York Yankees in Game 7 of the American League Championship Series, Crystal Nielsen logged onto to read up on her team's improbable comeback that led to Boston's first World Series berth since 1986.

That's when she noticed that she could register to win two tickets to Game 1 of the World Series at Fenway Park. She entered, sent the link to her mother via instant message, and "forgot all about it."

So when her phone rang the next day while she was at work, Nielson figured it was her mother, and, because she was busy, she ignored it.

"I went back to my desk later and checked my messages and I said, 'This isn't my mom,'" she said.

No, it was a representative from, informing Nielsen she was the winner of two tickets to Game 1 Saturday night, courtesy of the 2004 World Series sweepstakes.

"All I've known my whole life, really, is heartbreak from the Red Sox," said Nielsen, who brought her dad, Dale, a lifelong Red Sox fan. "So the fact that I'm able to be here for Game 1 of the World Series is huge."

They sat in the left-field grandstand, in seats just to the right of those that sit on top of the Green Monster. Nielsen pulled out a camera just before she rose to sing "God Bless America" during the seventh inning stretch and summed up the night with one sentence: "I think I've taken 200 pictures," she said.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.