CORVALLIS, Ore. – Catherine “Sammie” Chergo (pronounced Cher-go), who was the head women's golf coach at the University of Denver from 1998-2013 and qualified to the NCAA Tournament 11 times, will lead the Oregon State women's golf program as head coach, OSU Director of Athletics Bob De Carolis announced Friday.
“We were fortunate to have an exceptional pool of candidates for our vacancy; Sammie quickly rose to the top,” De Carolis said. “She has a proven record of student-athlete development, both on and off the course, and overall her teams have had a great success at the national level. I believe she will be an outstanding ambassador for Oregon State University and I look forward to watching our program develop under her guidance.”
Chergo launched the University of Denver's women's golf program and turned it into a perennial nationally-ranked team. Chergo's teams finished in the top 50 nine times from 2002-11 including end-of-year rankings of No. 7 in 2007 and No. 8 in 2008.
“I'm thrilled to be a part of the Oregon State family,” Chergo said. “I want to thank Bob De Carolis, Marianne Vydra and the rest of the OSU Athletics administration for trusting me with the program. I'm very excited to get to know the team, the university and the Corvallis community.”
Chergo's teams won nine consecutive Sun Belt Conference titles from 2004-13 and qualified to 11 straight NCAA Tournaments, from 2002-12, including three berths in the finals finishing 16th, sixth and fifth, respectively.
During her time at the helm of DU women's golf, Chergo's student-athletes earned 35 NGCA All-America scholar honors, 32 all-conference honors and had four National Golf Coaches Association (NGCA) All-Americans. She was named the Sun Belt Conference Coach of the Year six times and was honored as the Sun Belt Conference All-Time Coach for the 30th anniversary in 2006.
She also has served on the NCAA Division I Women's Golf Committee, Sun Belt Conference Golf Committee and the University Athletic Affairs Committee at DU.
Prior to her time at Denver, Chergo was an assistant coach at the University of Colorado during the 1996-97 season.
Chergo took up golf during her freshman year at Colorado State, and went on to earn three letters from 1988-91. She was selected to represent Colorado at the United States Golf Association Women's Public Links Championships in 1996, 1997 and 1999, and won the Colorado Women's Golf Association Mashie Championship in 1998 and 1999.
Her athletic career was distinguished beginning at Arvada West High School, outside Denver, where she earned all-state honors in softball, basketball and soccer. As a senior, she was selected the USA Today state of Colorado Female High School Athlete of the Year, The Denver Post Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year and Colorado Sportswoman Foundation All-Around Athlete of the Year.
After a one-year hiatus from coaching college golf, she becomes the sixth head coach in Oregon State women's golf history replacing Risë Alexander, who directed the Beavers for the past 24 seasons and 27 overall.
Chergo earned a bachelor's of science in biology and nutrition from Colorado State in 1993 and added a master's of science in management from the University of Denver in 2005.