April 24, 2014
FRESNO, Calif. - In return for her history-making 27-year career as the Bulldogs' softball head coach, the Fresno State athletic department announced its pre-game plans for the Margie Wright Diamond renaming ceremony next weekend.
The Saturday, May 3 contest vs. Colorado State start time has now been moved to 2 p.m. to accommodate Bulldog fans from the Central Valley and beyond.
The soon-to-be christened field will welcome a ribbon-cutting ceremony and first pitch by the former hall-of-fame head coach just prior. Also joining her will be University President Dr. Joseph I. Castro and Director of Athletics Thomas Boeh.
"Saturday will be a very special day for softball fans everywhere," said Paul Ladwig, Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Relations, "and a great afternoon for the Red Wave to honor Coach Wright. We want to make sure fans get to the Diamond early and not miss the special on-field ceremony."
The honorary first pitch is set for 1:57 pm, and fans that get to the stadium early can get a limited edition Margie Wright Diamond Dedication Day towel.
Fans can then cheer on the `Dogs, currently tied for first place in the conference with the Rams who sport identical 10-5 MW records.
In late March, the California State University Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve the switch in honor of the NCAA's all-time winningest Division I softball coach. In her tenure with the Bulldogs from 1986-2012, she amassed 1,294 wins, including 10 Women's College World Series appearances and 17 conference titles.
Wright, who led Fresno State to its first-ever team national championship in 1998, was a driving force behind the construction of the 3,288-seat Bulldog Diamond in 1996.
Her resume also includes a stint as U.S. Olympic Coach and National Coach of the Year honors. Under her direction, Fresno State was ranked in the national top 25 polls for 27 consecutive years, while the Red Wave fan base led the nation in average attendance 13 times.
This weekend, Fresno State fans can catch another key three-game home series vs. UNLV, April 25-27. Also on tap are a host of ticketing and marketing promotions for its games at 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and Sunday 1 p.m. finale.
Facial Hair Friday means those with real or fake facial hair get free admission to the series opener. It's also Youth Jersey Friday, so all youth (12 and under) get into the game free with a softball or baseball jersey.
On Saturday, Bark in the Park is back, and fans can bring their dogs out to the outfield berm and enjoy the game (and dogs get in free), while the Valley Animal Center will be in attendance with adoptable dogs.
As part of its season-long promotion, Salute to Sundays means all active military and veterans receive free admission to the finale with a valid military ID.
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