Silence is Compliance

This is the first in a series titled, Hope Speaks for Social Justice, written by former Hope student-athletes of color. Their words seek to educate and activate the Hope community in the nation’s quest to end racial injustice.

Lately, if you’ve watched the news, read articles, seen social media, or even experienced social unrest, there’s a great chance you saw, read, or heard the words, “Silence is Compliance.”

* * *

May 30th, I’m bustling down Fulton Avenue in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with two friends. I see red and blue lights swirling in the intersection of Fulton and Division, cars backed up for what looked like a mile each way, and face-masked people filling every remaining crevice of the streets, sidewalks, and landscaping. An incredibly complex sight in the midst of a global pandemic. 

By the time I was able to take all of this in, I found my feet settle in a sea of people, my hands gripping the edges of my poster board, and my arms shooting up to display just two of my many declarations for people who look like me: “No Justice, No Peace” on the front and “This is an American Problem” on the back. 

* * *

When Christians, elected leaders, law enforcers, health-care workers, colleagues, strangers, and even neighbors, choose to look at Black skin as a threat or of less importance, that eliminates the opportunity for a just society for Black people, further eliminating true peace for Black people. But that side of my sign (No Justice, No Peace), I’m not writing about that. 

“This is an American Problem.” So why polarize the topic by making it political?

Almost every family has that rule for get-togethers, be it cookouts or just dinner: don’t bring up politics. Why? Because 1) politics are polarizing, and 2) polarizing conversations are uncomfortable, especially when 3) the conversation is not warranted. My friends, human rights and justice 1) should never be polarizing topics, and though 2) calling out systemic oppression and racism can be uncomfortable, 3) it is beyond warranted. This is not the time – there is never a time – to intentionally not address injustice, oppression, and racism to appease another’s discomfort. Silence is compliance.

Specifically, to my privileged friends and allies, you, too, have the ability to speak truth to those in your circles and influence a change of heart, mind, and action. But it takes a commitment to speak up and out. Speaking up when you witness classmates making discriminatory comments about their Black professor, and speaking out when you see an opportunity to inform and humanize. Words cannot express the disappointment I feel when friends and allies are supportive of racial justice one-on-one, but are nowhere to be heard from when it matters. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. expressed the same sentiment when he said, “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” 

The sooner we recognize that this is an American Problem, the sooner we reach the common goal of liberty and justice and peace for ALL. I hope you join me in using your voice for progress and your actions for change. 

Author Angelique Gaddy is a 2017 graduate of Hope who majored in business management and communication and played women’s basketball for the Flying Dutch. After Hope, Gaddy earned a master’s degree in sport management at Western Michigan University and worked in athletics compliance at Grand Valley State University. She recently accepted a position with Hope as a regional admissions representative in Chicago. 

Angelique Gaddy in action in the NCAA Tournament in 2017

A Message from AD Tim Schoonveld

Dear Hope College Student-Athlete,

Portrait of Tim Schoonveld
Athletic Director Tim Schoonveld

Just like many of you, I have watched with sadness and anger the events of the last couple of weeks in the United States.  As a white man in a position of power, I fully realize that I have been privileged beyond that of so many. I also realize that with this reality comes responsibility to steward my privilege for the good of others and this world. The other day, I saw a tweet from a former Hope College student-athlete who said:

“It’s exhausting as hell being black. I’m speaking to my white friends in real life and on twitter – I don’t think you really understand just how exhausting it really is to see a black man get unnecessarily killed on video a day after a white woman uses her whiteness to call the police….”

How is it that we live in a world where anyone should feel like that?! I am ashamed at how I may have, in any way, contributed to people feeling like this, and today I am reaching out to challenge us ALL to be better, to do better, and to stand up to racism and injustice. While I write this, I do not presume to have any idea of what our African American student-athletes and student-athletes of color (AHANA) are going through or what they truly need. But I am committing to seeing and listening to them with humility. To see their joys and their struggles. To see what they need from me and others. To listen to what I can do in my position to help end racism and injustice in our community and beyond. And I am committing to love. To love my “neighbor as I love myself and my family.” To love with actions and not with only my words.  

To our African American and AHANA student-athletes, I am sorry that it has taken tragedy and injustice and protests for me to write this letter, and I promise that I will do better personally and in my role at Hope College. To those of us who have been privileged to be largely free from racism and injustice in our lives, I am challenging you to see those who are dealing with injustice, to listen to those who are victims of subtle and overt racism, and to demonstrate your love for them by standing up for truth and what is right. We can be better. We will be better. We must be better. 

As people of Hope, we are called to be a light, and I am committing to work with campus leadership and our student-athletes of color to find tangible solutions on our campus.  As of today, I am committing to the following in moving forward:

  1. In an effort to see and listen, we will publish blog posts written by our alumni student-athletes of color who will share their personal thoughts on what is going on in our country, along with some specific advice to you, our present student-athletes.
  2. Our athletic staff will be engaging in on-going cultural awareness education (beginning in Aug. 2020) so that we can grow in our development in providing a transformational experience for ALL student-athletes. We will begin this under the guidance of Dr. Sonja Trent Brown, Chief Officer for Culture and Inclusion at Hope College.  
  3. Effective this fall, we will be creating a Student-Athletes of Color Advisory Committee.  While we do not have all the details on who will be on this committee, we anticipate leadership will come from present student-athletes of color, some Hope staff and possibly some alumni student-athletes of color. We will spend the summer listening and taking feedback on how to structure this in the most effective way.
  4. Hope Athletics will continue to improve our hiring process to be more inclusive in both how and where we recruit qualified candidates.
  5. I want to hear from any of you who want to share. I promise to listen, ask questions, and do my best to respond in appropriate ways to your needs.  Please feel free to email me your thoughts at schoonveld@hope.edu.

I know that we will not be perfect and have much to learn. As it says in 1 John 3:18, “Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” It is time for Hope College Athletics to show our beliefs with actions and truth. I look forward to partnering with each of you to stand up to racism and injustice. And I am excited to see you all this fall. Keep bringing a light and standing up for what is right!

With deep sincerity,

Tim “Schoonie” Schoonveld

Get Your Hope Athletics Creativity On!

Looking for fun activities to do with your family? Need a stress reliever and something to do during a study break? Look no further! Hope Athletics has created a series of Coloring Challenges to stay STRONG and show your TRUE Hope spirit! Download and print Dutch the Mascot, color him and re-share on your Facebook, Instagram or Twitter pages! Make sure to tag @HopeAthletics and use #KeepingHope!

Leaping and Diving by Faith

Competitive divers are notorious for launching their bodies into the air with reckless abandon, trusting that hours of practice and muscle memory will result in flawless timing, placement, and form, and ease them into the pool with the slightest hint of a splash. For Hope College sophomore Kamaron Wilcox of Grand Rapids (Forest Hills Central), hurling his body off a bouncy composite springboard to contort into twists and backflips evokes no fear because he places his trust not just in his own abilities but rather in something much bigger: his faith.

Just last weekend, Wilcox claimed two MIAA titles; first taking the 1-meter board event with 447.60 points and achieving an NCAA regional cut, and then winning the 3-meter board scoring 474.65 points. He also walked away from the meet with Hope’s first-ever MIAA Most Valuable Diver award.  What makes his accomplishments all the more impressive is that Wilcox stepped foot on a competitive diving board for the first time last year.

How did he go from diving newbie to diving champion in just a year? It’s an ascent as incredible as it is improbable, thanks to Health Dynamics, hard work and providence.

One day during the fall of 2018, Wilcox decided to cool off in the Dow Center pool after his Health Dynamics workout and have a little fun, too. Knowing that doing tricks off the boards wasn’t allowed for students who weren’t on the diving team, Wilcox let the lifeguard know he was a gymnast and had been flipping and training on the trampoline most of his life. 

How did he go from diving newbie to diving champion in just a year? It’s an ascent as incredible as it is improbable, thanks to Health Dynamics, hard work and providence.

When he noticed head swimming and diving coach Jake Taber standing on deck, he says, “I didn’t know what he would say because he was a coach and I didn’t know if he’d be stricter on the rules. I was doing some double backflips off the one meter and I saw Taber looking at me after I did one of those. I thought to myself, ‘Oh no, he’s going to tell me to stop so I should probably do something easier that requires more control.’ I decided to do a backflip with a twist. It’s all so funny now because Taber walked right over to me and rather than yelling, he said ‘I don’t want you to take this the wrong way, but who are you?’ I told him my name and we started talking and he asked if I would ever consider joining the diving team… I said sure!”

Now holding two MIAA titles and a major league award, Wilcox believes his success did not happen by chance.  In fact, he feels as though nothing in his life has happened by chance, especially his decision to come to Hope. Considering Hope College was the last school on his mind when applying to larger universities with larger physics programs, Wilcox knows that God was behind it all.

But he took a giant leap of faith and came to Hope because he felt immediately welcomed by a strong faith-based community. He is currently studying physics and mathematics while doing research for Dr. Jennifer Hampton, professor of physics, and considers his lab group his second family. “It’s like Professor Hampton is mom and all of the other people in the lab are each other’s siblings,” describes Wilcox, who is an MIAA Academic Honor Roll honoree (meaning he has a cumulative GPA os higher than 3.5). After the news of Wilcox’s accomplishments at the MIAA Championships broke last weekend, his physics department family were the first to retweet his success. 

Though Wilcox has only been a member of the team for two years, diving coach Rebecca Garza shares that he has already stepped up and taken on a leadership role on the team. And just like he has with the physics department, Kamaron treats his teammates like family. “I think he brings his outside (perspective) onto the pool deck, so it helps the team feel more like a family,” Garza says. “He checks in with people and he asks how he can pray for you. He’s a well-rounded athlete and I never have to worry about his relationship with the team.”

With just two years’ experience, Wilcox has catapulted himself to the top. Yet he doesn’t take his leap, entry and landing at Hope lightly.

“I attribute this to God,” he says. “Bringing me to Hope and then joining the diving team was part of His plan for me.”

When asked how he feels about being a two-time league champion, Wilcox answers graciously. “I think the most profound thing that I felt after (receiving the award) was simply just feeling the same. I still felt human. I was praying a lot for God to just humble me and not let it go to my head. And he did exactly that. He was showing me exactly where I had failed in my life and showing me how much I needed to rely on Him and how little of that was me. I just happened to be the one on the boards at that time.”  

With the fundamentals laid during his years as a gymnast and the foundation of his faith, the potential for Kam Wilcox’s success this weekend at regionals, and next two years at Hope, appears to be boundless.

30 Million Yards and Counting

Senior Paula Nolte in the breaststroke. Photo by Lynne Powe

In any sport, mental strength is just as important as physical prowess. For swimmers, this is especially true considering a substantial amount of time is spent underwater, in individual lanes, allowing for hours of solitary thought to focus on the task at hand. For Hope College senior Paula Nolte of Elmhurst, Illinois (York Community HS), time spent in deep thought has never been an issue: in fact, she thrives on it. 

MIAA Swimming and Diving Championship Website

As a three-time defending MIAA champion in the 200-yard breaststroke, an esteemed student-researcher, a soon-to-be published author, and an impending graduate with a biology major and chemistry minor, Nolte has shown that it’s possible to be extremely successful in both academics and athletics. Just after her sophomore year, during the summer of 2018, she completed an internship through the National Science Foundation working alongside Dr. Frank Smith at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. The project studied gut gene expression during embryonic development in tardigrades (a microscopic organism that’s closely related to arthropods, or insects) as part of Smith’s ongoing research in the evolutionary development field. 

When her research with Dr. Frank Smith came to a close, Nolte immediately took on a new challenge, participating in biology research at Hope throughout her junior year into the summer of 2019. She worked in the lab of Dr. Phillip Rivera, associate professor of biology, investigating ways in which longer space flight could potentially impact astronauts by simulating space radiation using the Pelletron accelerator in the physics lab. The project studied how radiation exposure would impact cognition and behavior in mice. Now due to her research in both Dr. Smith’s and Dr. Rivera’s labs, manuscripts are in the works, making Nolte an undergraduate published author.

Although highly involved and successful student-athlete, it has not been easy for Nolte. Her sophomore and junior years were very difficult, leading her to consider ending her swimming career. With multiple science classes, research, her responsibilities as a teaching assistant (TA), and the rigors of collegiate swimming, the pace of life became overwhelming. Coincidentally, her exercise-induced asthma, diagnosed when she was a child, reappeared. Nolte took two summers off from training to reset and reconsider her life path.

Nolte, center, cheers on her Hope teammates. Photo by Steven Herppich

What helped her to find her way? In the summer of 2019, prior to her senior year, she chose to participate in one of Hope’s SEED (Sport Evangelism to Equip Disciples) trips to the Dominican Republic. Hope partners with Sawyer Products, a company that specializes in outdoor protection supplies (water filtration being one of them) to make SEED possible. With funds provided by Sawyer, groups of student-athletes travel to five global locations to spread God’s word through service and play. The trip to the DR changed Nolte’s personal and career trajectory. “There is a new part of me that I definitely did not think I would be discovering at this point in my life,” she says. “This has been a strange year, but a good one.” 

No longer enthralled with lab work, Nolte now has a new interest in the realm of public health. This change in career path means long research hours are no longer required and has decreased her workload significantly. With a lighter schedule, Nolte has been able to refocus on one of the most important things in her life: swimming.

Coach Jake Taber says, “Paula is just incredibly bright and highly capable, and her involvement in the things that she’s done in the research is inspiring. But when you get to know her as an athlete, she’s still so analytical. She always wants to know what her stroke looks like; she talks about how it feels, how it’s setting up, where her timing is, if that’s where it should be. I feel like she is somebody that understands the sport better than most.” 

Understanding the sport on a deeper level has helped to develop her stroke and make her an even greater threat in the pool. In this MIAA Championship week, Nolte is set to defend her title as a three-time champ in the 200-yard breaststroke.

Regarding the future, Nolte hopes “to be working as an epidemiologist at the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta and monitoring infectious disease both abroad and in the U.S., or working as a public health officer, helping countries who experienced natural disasters and the health issues that go along with those.”  

With her sharp intellect and incredible work ethic, the doors of opportunity for Nolte appear wide open. In the over 30 million yards that Nolte has estimated she has swam in her lifetime, she has silently allowed her mind to explore and analyze the possibilities that lie ahead.

An Impressive, If Occasionally Broken, Body of Work

Dan Clyde in the butterfly. Photo by Steven Herppich

Most athletes train to compete against other athletes. For Hope College senior Daniel Clyde of Ann Arbor, Michigan (Huron HS), who has had collapsed lungs and a subsequent surgery, a concussion, a dislocated elbow and fractured bone, diagnosis of vasovagal syncope and narcolepsy, as well as ongoing back pains, his fiercest opponent has been his own body.

The litany of injury and surgical setbacks he has had to face are as fierce as his determination to overcome them. Despite the adversity, Clyde was still able to set three records leading up to his senior year. He currently holds the MIAA record in the 400-yard individual medley (3:57.14) and also set school records in the 200 IM (1:50.87) and 400 IM (3:57.14). 

MIAA Swimming and Diving Championship Website

Shortly after making the decision to swim competitively for Hope while pursuing a degree in biology, Clyde sustained the fourth concussion of his young life while body surfing in Lake Michigan. While viewing his CT scan, the doctors discovered that part of his C-5 vertebrae was missing. Clyde was immediately confined to a neck brace for four weeks. On top of that, just four weeks later, he experienced his first collapsed lung; and more were to follow.. Obviously, it was not the ideal way to start his collegiate swimming career.

His sophomore year Clyde got through the season free of major injury. But then during his junior year at Hope, after his fourth collapsed lung, he went to see a surgeon in Ann Arbor who determined that he couldn’t afford any more lung failures; he scheduled surgery that week when staples were inserted to ensure his lungs would stay in place. Although the surgery went smoothly, his body sustained a severe allergic reaction to the skin prep that had been applied. The reaction took over the entire left side of his torso, front and back, causing inflammation accompanied by a fluid-filled rash preventing his body from scabbing for three weeks. Scar tissue build up also prevented him from lifting his arm, making swimming very difficult, especially since Clyde swims the individual medley, an event containing every stroke. 

The summer before his senior year, Clyde made a complete recovery and came back to Hope in the best shape of his life, he says. But — you guessed it — not two weeks in, he sustained another injury, a dislocated elbow and a fractured bone caused by a playful wrestling match with one of his fellow teammates. Clyde recalls making the long trek to Coach Taber’s office “and, before opening my mouth, Coach asked, ‘How long are you out?’” he recalls. It took six weeks for Clyde to fully recover. Though he still deals with lower back pain and elbow issues,, this was the last of his injuries. He hopes…and prays. The MIAA Swimming and Diving Championships start on Wednesday and Clyde plans on defending his titles as league champ in the 200 butterfly and the 400 IM.

Although his collegiate swimming career has been wrought with frustration, his difficulties have also ignited a fire and a drive to overcome them. When asked how he has dealt with the adversity, Clyde states, “It’s given me an edge. It’s like you’re never going to feel like ‘Oh, I’m on top of the world and I can’t be beaten’ when your own body is beating you. Every time I come back, it gives me more motivation, like I have something to prove. Not to anybody else but for myself, because I’m not going to let myself get beaten by whatever goes wrong along the way.” 

Clyde and Paula Nolte cheer on their teammates. Photo by Steven Herppich

Coach Jake Taber agrees: “With Dan, it’s not, how do I motivate him to go out and work hard. It’s almost, how do I protect him from himself at times. Dan’s biggest opponent and critic is himself, yet even in his darkest hours, he leads the team selflessly. But, you know, I think Dan has done a nice job of recognizing when he’s had limitations.”

Even though Clyde has spent a significant amount of time out of the pool unable to train along his teammates, his role as captain and leader of the team has not diminished. Through it all, he has committed to be on deck at practices, even when he cannot swim or train, and refuses to miss a meet whether he is able to compete, or not. He explains that he’s always made it a goal of his to be more important to the team outside of the water than in the water; to keep a positive atmosphere going.

Clyde states that he is there for his team because, “I know all too well how quickly a sport can be taken from you and if I put all of my own worth into how much I’m doing athletically for myself instead of what am I doing for the rest of the team, it would be a lot harder every time I got injured.” 

With the MIAA Championships this week, Clyde feels his healthiest in a long time. Since he joined the team freshman year, his biggest goal in the pool has been to qualify a relay team to nationals. That may happen. But when all is said and done at Hope outside of the pool, Clyde plans on taking a gap year following graduation with plans of pursuing a PhD in ecology or parasitology. 

From the Athletic Director

Portrait of Tim Schoonveld

Dear Friends and Family of Hope College Athletics,

At our opening athletics coach/staff meeting this fall, new President Matthew A. Scogin ’02 spoke these words from Isaiah over our entire department:

 “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” Isaiah 43:19

Those words, and President Scogin’s subsequent message to us, sparked an excitement for a number of new things. A new athletic year. A new academic year. A new presidency. A new era. And, now this new publication. With this first edition of Orange and Blue Illustrated, we hope you too appreciate the start of the latest way we get to tell the many new and exciting stories that happen every day in Hope College Athletics. 

As an athletic department, we hold strong to our mission of academic success, competitive excellence and transformational experiences for every one of our 541 student-athletes. We expect them to excel in the classroom and graduate. We expect our teams to do their very best to win games, competitions and championships. We expect to transform the lives of our student-athletes and staff because of what we do here day in and day out. I am so honored to be a part of the team that values these expectations. This is an amazing place!

In the following pages, you will witness for yourself the transformation that goes on each and every day at Hope and in Hope Athletics. Two student-athletes who are able to compete on multiple teams because of our commitment to the NCAA Division III philosophy. An entire team that serves at the West Michigan Miracle League, where members strive to give to others but in reality, have their lives profoundly impacted instead. Student-athletes who discover, dedicate and develop excellence in their academic pursuit of nursing. New head coaches who seek to do more than win, they plan to make a difference in their student-athletes’ lives. You’ll read how student-athletes engage in life-altering international sport ministry trips through our SEED program and how internships resulted. And, we catch up with some outstanding athlete-alumni who have put their Hope diplomas to great use and are changing the world one life at a time.

We hope that you are inspired by the things that God is doing here at Hope. Enjoy our first issue of Orange and Blue. We are honored to do the work we do as we seek to transform lives for Jesus Christ through athletics. Thank you for being a part of our team!

Be Strong. Be True.

Go Hope!

Tim Schoonveld 96
Athletic Director

The Bigger Picture

Claire Hallock and Amanda Bandrowski playing doubles tennis
Photograph by Lynne Powe ’86

Masterminds Beyond the Net

Seniors Amanda Bandrowski (right) and Claire Hallock (left) have been a formidable force for the Hope women’s tennis team since they set foot in the Etheridge Tennis Complex as freshmen. Each plays at one of the top-two singles spots and together they play No. 1 doubles. Their Hope résumés speak volumes of athletic and academic achievement: Bandrowski was the MIAA MVP in 2018, Hallock earned that honor in 2019; both are two-time MIAA Academic Honor Roll honorees and three-time MIAA league champs; and, both spent their summer of 2019 working on their futures — Bandrowski interned at the USTA National Center in Orlando, Florida, while Hallock conducted research at Hope on solar-cell technology. When the 2020 season starts for the Flying Dutch tennis team in February, the dynamic duo will look to simultaneously achieve one more thing: They’ll chase the career-best singles record for Hope women’s tennis, currently owned by Audrey Coates ’97 Akland (87-17). At the time of Orange and Blue Illustrated’s publication, Bandrowski’s singles record was 81-13; Hallock’s was 76-12.

Basketball player Preston Granger falls to the sideline
Photograph by Steven Herppich

Help a Guy Out?

Basketball student-athlete Preston Granger was down but not out in a game at Hope’s DeVos Fieldhouse last season. The junior center’s hustle landed him temporarily on the sideline where he received a little help from his friends in the front row, as well as from thousands of cheering Hope fans throughout the arena. That kind of support is a DeVos Fieldhouse norm for Granger and his teammates — and for the Hope College women’s basketball team, too. Since 1998-99, both the Flying Dutchmen and Flying Dutch have led NCAA Division III in average home basketball attendance. The 11-consecutive-seasons feat makes playing at home a verifiable pick-me-up.

Emma Schaefer races in the swimming individual medley
Photograph by Lynne Powe 86

Head and Shoulders Above

In the individual medley, junior Emma Schaefer has to be able do it all — butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle — and fast. Which she
does. Schaefer is the defending MIAA champion in both the 200- and 400-yard individual medley and the school record holder in the former. Yet, she is not only versatile in the pool. An MIAA Academic Honor Roll and dean’s list student-athlete from DeWitt, Michigan, who majors in exercise science and plans to attend medical school, Schaefer spent much of the summer of 2019 abroad, first studying in Austria and then serving on a Hope SEED mission trip in Zambia. 

Cole Sheffler engaged in a face-off in lacrosse
Photograph by Steven Herppich

Leading with the Face-Off

As a face-off specialist, Cole Scheffler got every game started for the 2019 Hope men’s lacrosse team. It’s a job that can be easily overlooked, but face-off specialists play a major role in getting the ball rolling, passing, shooting and scoring. Scheffler, from Rockford, Michigan, won 138-of-207 face-offs overall (66%) while going 58-for-79 (73%) in the league, so he was named to the 2019 All-MIAA First Team as a freshman for good reason. Those starts were as instrumental as goals, assists and defense in the 2019 Flying Dutchmen’s overall record (14-4), second MIAA regular-season championship, and first-ever MIAA tournament title as well as NCAA playoff berth. 

#WeAreOne: Fall Sports Roundup

 “When one wins, we all win,” Athletic Director Tim Schoonveld ’96 likes to say about Hope’s overall team culture. Since that’s the case, there were a whole lot of collective Hope victories this past fall.

Two Hope College teams won Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association titles, while no team finished below third place in the league during the fall of 2019. On top of that, a total of four Hope squads qualified for NCAA Division III Championships, and Hope hosted two NCAA tournament opening rounds in football and men’s soccer, to boot. 

Individually, five Hope student-athletes earned All-American honors, two more were league MVPs, and 42 total received All-MIAA accolades.

CROSS COUNTRY
The 27th-ranked Hope College women’s cross country team won
its fifth MIAA championship in a row and qualified for the NCAA Division III Championships for the 10th consecutive year under coach Mark Northuis ’82. The Flying Dutch were led by a freshman Anna Tucker (pictured) of Midland, Michigan, who was runner-up at the MIAA Championships and finished 24th at nationals with a time of 22:00.01. The former result earned Tucker All-MIAA honors and the latter finish made her an All-American, Hope’s ninth all-time  in women’s cross country.

Anna Tucker

Tucker was joined on the All-MIAA First Team by senior Anna Frazee of Watervliet, Michigan, and senior Chelsea Miskelley and junior Jacinda Cole, both of Holland, Michigan. On the All-MIAA Second Team were: Senior Rebecca Duran of Palatine, Illinois, and senior Kelly Peregrine of Traverse City, Michigan.

The Hope College men’s cross country team ran to a tie for third place in the MIAA. The squad was led by sophomore Nick Hoffman of Holland, Michigan who earned All-MIAA Second Team honors. Hoffman finished 14th at the league meet.

FOOTBALL
Hope College football won its first MIAA championship since 2007 and first outright title since 2006 by going undefeated in league play (7-0) and claiming only its second nine-win season ever (9-2). Under AFCA Region 4 Coach of the Year Peter Stuursma ‘93, the Flying Dutchmen received an automatic bid to the NCAA playoffs by virtue of their MIAA crown and played a first-round NCAA Division III Championship game at home at Ray and Sue Smith Stadium. The Flying Dutchmen lost to Wartburg College (Iowa) in that playoffs opener.

Mason Dekker

Nine Hope players were selected to the All-MIAA First Team, including dual league MVPs: Senior quarterback Mason Opple (offense) of Hudsonville, Michigan, and senior defensive back
Mason Dekker  (defense) of Holland, Michigan (pictured top) who was
also made The Associated Press NCAA Division III All-America Second Team. Joining Dekker and Opple on the MIAA First Team were: Senior defensive tackle Jake Babb of Caledonia, Michigan; senior safety Luke Beckhusen of Coldwater, Michigan; senior receiver Christian Bos of Hudsonville, Michigan; senior punter Austin Heeres of Wyoming, Michigan; sophomore running back Kenyea Houston of Chicago, Illinois; senior left tackle Timothy Ivery of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; and, senior center  Zach Smith  (pictured bottom) of Suttons Bay, Michigan. Smith was also named an AFCA and D3football.com First-Team All-American, and the winner of the Rimington Trophy as the best center in NCAA Division III.

Zach Smith

All-MIAA Second Team honorees were: Senior receiver Cooper Cecchini of Hudsonville, Michigan; senior left tackle Noah DeVelder of Grand Rapids, Michigan; junior right tackle Brady Eding of Hamilton, Michigan; junior running back Connor Mellon of Adrian, Michigan; and, sophomore linebacker Jeremiah Purnell of Wyoming, Michigan.

GOLF
Both men’s and women’s golf took second place in the league. Each will host an MIAA NCAA qualifying round
in the spring due to those finishes. 

On the men’s side, head coach Scott Lokers’ Flying Dutchmen finished the fall season with a league 301.7 stroke average. Freshman Jack Crawford of Carmel, Indiana, earned All-MIAA First Team honors, while senior Daniel Settecerri of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and freshman Drew Dykens of Holland, Michigan, were awarded second-team All-MIAA honors. 

The Flying Dutch, coached by Greg Stafford, finished with a 335.0 stroke average in the MIAA. Juniors Jordyn Rioux of Livonia, Michigan, and Abby Meder of Lansing, Michigan, as well as sophomore Megan Jenkinson of Traverse City, Michigan, all received second-team All-MIAA accolades.

SOCCER
In men’s and women’s soccer, runner-up finishes were again achieved by two like-sport teams. The Flying Dutchmen finished with a 14-6-1 overall record, 6-1 in the league, while the Flying Dutch had a mark of 6-5-6 overall and 5-1-2 in the MIAA.

Head coach Dave Brandt’s men’s team received an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III Championship, and Hope hosted the first two rounds at Van Andel Soccer Stadium for the first time ever. The Flying Dutchmen were defeated by Ohio Wesleyan University in the first round. 

Logan Bylsma

The Hope College men’s soccer trio of senior midfielder Isaac Braak of Hudsonville, Michigan, sophomore midfielder Ryan Flynn of Bloomington, Illinois, and senior defender Jordan Hooker of Grand Rapids, Michigan, claimed All-MIAA First Team honors while sophomore forward Alec Belcastro of Washington, Pennsylvania, was chosen as the MIAA Newcomer of the Year. Belcastro was among four second-team honorees, along with junior midfielder Ty Dalton of Rockford, Michigan, sophomore defender Brett Dyer of Northport, Michigan, and senior forward  Logan Bylsma  (pictured) of Hudsonville, Michigan. Bylsma was also named CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American for Division III.

In women’s soccer, four players earned
All-MIAA honors: senior midfielder Megan Bigelow of Flushing, Michigan,
and junior midfielder Maria Egloff of Kalamazoo, Michigan, on the first team, and junior forward Corinne Cole of St. Paul, Minnesota, and freshman defender Erin Powers of Norton Shores, Michigan on the second team.

VOLLEYBALL
Coach Becky Schmidt’s ’99 volleyball team finished runner-up  in the MIAA and received an at-large bid to the 2019 NCAA Division III Championship for the 12th time in 14 years. where the 10th-ranked Flying Dutch advanced to the regional final before bowing to host Calvin University in four sets. Volleyball finished with a 24-8 overall record, 7-1 in the league.

McKenna Otto

Sophomore middle hitter  McKenna Otto  (pictured) of Wheaton, Illinois, not only earned All-MIAA First Team honors, she was also selected as a second-team NCAA Division III All-American by the AVCA. 

Also receiving All-MIAA First Team recognition was sophomore outside hitter Ana Grunewald of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Two more Flying Dutch were selected to the All-MIAA Second Team: Senior libero Gabbi Vachon of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and sophomore setter Tracy Westra of Clarendon Hills, Illinois.

MIAA COMMISSIONER’S AND LEARFIELD CUP STANDINGS
Hope College is in first place in the MIAA Commissioner’s Cup all-sports standings after the fall season with a total of 64.5 points in four men’s and four women’s sports. Calvin University is second (49), while Trine University is third (48.5). The Commissioner’s Cup award is based on the cumulative performance of each member school in the league’s 23 sports — 11 in women’s sports and 12 in men’s sports, with each school counting its top eight finishes by gender. The fall update includes each school’s MIAA finish in all sports.

In the first update of the NCAA Division III Learfield IMG College Directors’ Cup, Hope stands in 22nd place after the fall. Points are awarded based on each institution’s finish in NCAA Championships. Hope totaled 186 points by reaching the regional final in women’s volleyball, finishing 27th in women’s cross country and earning first round points in football and men’s soccer.

There are 446 schools in NCAA Division III.