Manager, Media Relations and Publications
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Jan. 22, 2009) - USA Volleyball announced today that Lindsey Berg (Honolulu) has been selected as the 2008 USA Volleyball Women's Indoor Player of the Year.
Berg and her 2008 Olympic Games teammates earned the silver medal in Beijing. She played a key role as one of the two setters and the co-captain by helping to stabilize the squad dealing with the magnitude of the Olympic Games simultaneously with a tragedy affecting nearly the entire team.
"Obviously, I am thrilled and thankful to have received such a huge, individual honor as selected by our coaching staff," Berg said. "Throughout the year, I simply concentrated on working hard to make our team better as a unit, whether on the court or off. One of the main roles of a setter is to bring court leadership and be an all-around influence on the game in intangible areas such as serving. As a setter, I still need to depend on the pass to get as good a set as possible to as many available hitting options as possible, and that definitely takes teamwork. I am thankful to my coaching staff and teammates, who all played a role in this honor and our team's success in 2008."
"Lindsey is our co-captain and a player who brings incredible energy to the team," said 2008 U.S. Women's Olympic Team Head Coach ‘Jenny' Lang Ping. "She pushes her teammates to work hard and stay focused. She is a smart, experienced player who brings great insights. During the Games, every time she came to the court she made a positive difference with her energy and determination. She played a key role in our quarterfinal win over Italy, bringing us back in the fourth set with her powerful jump serve."
Berg, competing at less than 100 percent full strength in her left knee that required surgery last September, played in 25 of the 33 sets during the Olympic Games in which the squad turned in a .250 team hitting efficiency and a 41 percent kill ratio. The setting combination of Berg and Robyn Ah Mow-Santos (Honolulu) played a key role in Logan Tom (Salt Lake City, Utah) earning the Best Scorer title during the Olympic Games.
Berg played a pivotal role during the Olympic Games quarterfinal round against Italy on Aug. 19. With the U.S. trailing 2-1 in sets, she took the service line to start the fourth set and promptly served the Americans to an 8-0 lead en route to a 25-18 victory. Berg again started the tiebreaking fifth set at the service line and did not yield the serve until the U.S. was in front with a 5-0 score. Team USA went on to win the set 15-6 to advance to the medal round. Berg tallied three aces, a block and 21 assists in the match.
After playing as a reserve in all three sets in the semifinal victory over Cuba on Aug. 21, Berg played a larger role during the gold medal match against Brazil. She started three of the four sets for Team USA and helped the U.S. become the only team at the Olympics to win a set against the eventual gold medalist. The Americans won the second set 25-18 and were leading 18-16 in the fourth set before succumbing in the end.
Berg competed in 82 of the possible 132 sets against international competition in 2009 as the U.S. coaching staff balanced playing time to assist in Olympic Games roster selections. She started 43 of the 51 sets possible during the FIVB World Grand Prix leading to a fourth-place finish for Team USA using a mixed roster of youth and veterans. Berg ranked seventh in setting during the World Grand Prix Preliminary Rounds.
Berg started four of six sets played during a three-match exhibition series with Brazil in June, including three set starts on June 11. Prior to returning to the U.S. Women's National Team, she competed in the Italian Serie A professional league with Asystel Volley Novara and led the squad to a fourth-place finish in the regular season and semifinal appearance in the postseason. She played in the second most sets among all setters in the league.