Fresno State faces three NCAA Tournament returnees among its five opening weekend tilts.
Assistant softball coach Laura Berg returns for her second stint as an assistant coach with the Fresno State softball program. Having been an assistant coach from 2000-2003, Berg reunites with the Bulldogs after stepping down to train with the U.S. Women's National Team.
A three-time U.S. Olympic gold medalist in softball, Berg has been a world-class athlete since becoming an USA National Team member in 1994. Her memorable Olympic highlights include scoring the first run of the gold medal game in 1996 and collecting the game-winning hit in 2000. She also has captured gold medals at three ISF World Championships in addition to a pair of gold medals at Pan American Games.
As a Bulldog, Berg was a four-time All-American whose collegiate career was highlighted by a NCAA Championship title in 1998. Also leading Fresno State to three Women's College World Series appearances and a pair of Western Athletic Conference crowns, Berg is the only Bulldog to record three consecutive 100-hit seasons. She finished with a .414 career batting average while also ranking among the NCAA's best in at bats, runs and triples. Her hit total of 396 ranks No. 2 all-time in NCAA Division I history. While her name is dotted throughout the school's and WAC annals, Berg is the only Fresno State player to amass 300 or more career hits and posted a 160-game defensive errorless streak. In addition, in 2003, the Fresno State Alumni Association honored Berg with the Top Dog Alumni Award as became the first athlete to be recognized.
A native of Santa Fe Springs, Calif., Berg received her bachelor's degree in commercial recreation from Fresno State in 1998.
2000-03, 2005-06:Rejoined the Fresno State coaching staff in summer 2005 ... Stepped down in 2004 while making third United States Women's National Team ... stepping down to train for 2007 season in order to make fourth consecutive USA Olympic softball team.
1998 (Senior):Directed Fresno State to a NCAA title ... finished career ranked No. 2 all-time in career hits in NCAA history ... one of three players to amass 300 or more career hits ... recorded her third straight 100-plus hit season (only Bulldog to accomplish this feat) ... tied the school's all-time career record in stolen bases vs. #1 Arizona in the NCAA Women's College World Series championship game ... set Fresno State and WAC career record in runs ... established a new single-season run record for the third straight year ... set WAC career record in at bats vs. UNLV on April 4 ... broke WAC career record in total bases vs. New Mexico on April 5 ... set a new career school record in hits vs. San Jose State on April 21 ... in WAC games only, set a new single-season hit mark with 53 ... led team in hits, runs, stolen bases and batting average while third in total bases ... wrapped up senior year by ranking No. 1 in school history in triples, runs, hits and stolen bases while being the WAC's career leader in triples, runs, hits, at bats, games played and total bases ... in the NCAA career record book, finished No. 3 in at bats, No. 5 in runs and tied for No. 11 in triples ... ended career with a 7-game hit streak & batted .520 (13-25) ... had at least one hit in 58 of 63 games played ... had 34 multiple hit games ... in the WAC, recorded at least one hit in 28 of 30 games with 16 multiple hit games ... recorded three multiple RBI games with eight two-out RBI games ... scored at least one run in 46 games with two or more scored in 19 ... overall, batted .458 as leadoff hitter and batted .448 in WAC play ...WAC Player of the Week ... had season-highs in hits, runs, stolen bases and batting average ... posted a career-best and season-high 29-game hit streak and batted .458 (54-118, 42 runs, 5 RBI, 2 doubles, triple, home run, walk, 5 stolen bases, 6 hit by pitch, 59 total bases, .500 slug pct.) ... tallied a season-best 15-game WAC hit streak and batted .492 (29-59) ... ranked all seven weeks in the NCAA stats in batting average.
1997 (Junior): Set school's career record in triples ... leadoff batter who led the team in batting, hits, runs, triples, hit by pitch and on base percentage (.446) ... had a hit in 56 of 69 games ... had 37 multiple hit games, including 12 three-hit performances ... broke own single-season run record ... second straight 100-hit season ... hit safely in 34 of last 42 games and batted .417 (63-151) ... recorded a career-best 160-game defensive errorless streak ... posted a season-best 24-game hit streak and batted .488 (42-86, 19 runs, 8 RBI, 5 triples, 3 stolen bases).
1996 (redshirt): Redshirted the season after being named to the 1996 USA Olympic Softball Team ... named Student Sports "Sisters of the Year."
1995 (Sophomore): Set single-season school records in triples and runs ... second Bulldog in school history to record 100 or more hits in a season ... scored at least one run in 40 games ... had 29 multiple hit games ... led the team in runs, doubles, triples, extra base hits (25) and stolen bases ... ranked in seven of 10 WAC offensive categories while leading the conference in runs and triples ... WAC Player of the Week ... eighth Bulldog to record 100 or more career runs ... College Sports Preseason All-American and Student Sports honors candidate.
1994 (Freshman): Hit a grand slam vs. Illinois State (Feb. 19 ... tied school's single-game record for hits (4) against CS Fullerton ... posted a nine-game hit streak and batted .361 (13-36) ... had 27 multiple hit games ... led the team in at bats ... snagged team's Gold Glove Award ... in WAC play, set league mark for most at bats (95) in a season and most runs scored in a single game (4).
Personal: Parents are Harvey and Audrey Berg ... had an older borther, Greg, and a younger brother, Geoff ... twin sister, Randi, also played for the Bulldogs and was the starting shortstop ... graduated from Fresno State in 1998 with a degree in recreation and leisure studies ... while at Fresno State, did community service work and was a guest speaker at several university and community engagements ... particpated in Red Ribbon Week (speaking on the importance of staying in school, saying no to drugs and living a healthy life ... volunteer for Special Olympics.
FRESNO STATE CAREER STATISTICS Year G/GS AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI S/SF BB K SB/SBA TB SLG% AVG 1994 65/65 238 42 83 4 5 2 20 5/0 4 8 5/6 103 .433 .349 1995 69/69 238 62 101 13 11 1 27 0/3 10 3 11/13 139 .584 .424 1997 69/69 245 69 104 16 7 2 34 3/0 5 2 7/8 140 .571 .424 1998 63/63 236 72 108 3 2 1 16 0/0 2 4 16/17 118 .500 .458 Totals 266/266 957 245 396 36 25 6 97 8/3 21 17 39/44 500 .522 .414