posted April 27, 1998

Flying Dutch Headed To NCAA Women's Tennis Championships

The Hope College women's tennis squad has gained
a berth in the 14-team NCAA Division III national championship
tournament to be played May 5-8 at Washington and Lee University
in Lexington, Va.
The Flying Dutch, under first-year coach Karen Page, posted
a school-record 23-1 dual match record this spring and are the
favored team when the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic
Association (MIAA) championship tournament is held in Holland
this weekend.
Hope will be making its first appearance as a team in the
NCAA tournament in nearly a decade. The Flying Dutch competed
for three straight years from 1987-89. The 1988 team finished
fifth in the nation while the 1987 and 1989 teams lost in the
first round.
The Flying Dutch will play Claremont-Mudd-Scripps of
Claremont, Calif. in a first round match on Tuesday, May 5. The
winner will meet defending national champion and top-seeded
Kenyon, Ohio in the quarterfinals on Wednesday, May 6. The semi-
finals and finals will be played on May 7-8 respectively.
The Flying Dutch won their first 19 consecutive matches en
route to becoming the first Hope tennis team -- men or women --
to record more than 20 wins in a season. The team's only loss
was to Kenyon (9-0) in the semi-finals of the Midwest
Invitational in Madison, Wisc. The team posted 15 shutout
victories and during the course of the season won 130-of-145
singles matches and 62-of-71 doubles matches.
Hope is a young team with just two seniors in the starting
lineup. The singles lineup, listed from the first thru the sixth
flight, is: sophomore Lindsay Etheridge of Grand Rapids (GR
Christian HS), sophomore Jennifer Smith of Holland (Holland HS),
freshman Julie Murray of Spring Lake (Spring Lake HS), freshman
Kristin Kooyer of Holland (Holland Christian HS), junior Joy
Green of Batavia, Ill. (Batavia HS) and senior Erin Sowerby of
Greenville (Greenville HS).
The doubles lineup is Smith and Sowerby, first flight;
Etheridge and Murray, second flight; and Green and senior Kate
Clay of Holland (Holland HS), third flight.
Other squad members include sophomore Jennifer Esterline of
Coldwater (Coldwater HS), sophomore Jessica Mulder of Queensbury,
N.Y. (Queensbury HS), and junior Heidi Van Langevelde of Holland
(Holland HS).
For just the second time in school history, the Flying Dutch
had three players win 20 or more singles matches in a season.
And that could increase following action in the upcoming
conference and national tournaments. The 1982 team had three
players won 20 ore more matches.
This season Kooyer is 22-1 at the fourth flight while Green
and Sowerby are each 20-2 at the fifth and sixth flights
respectively. Smith is 19-2 at the second flight while Murray is
19-3 at #3 and Etheridge 15-6 at #1.
Etheridge and Murray became just the fourth doubles team in
school history to win 20 or more matches. Together at second
flight this spring they are 20-2. The first flight double team
of Smith and Sowerby is 17-3 together while the third flight team
of Green and Clay is 18-4.
Other teams in the tournament include Trinity, Tex.,
Amherst, Mass., UC-San Diego, Calif., Skidmore, N.Y., Luther,
Iowa, College of New Jersey, Emory, Ga., Washington & Lee, Va.,
Williams, Mass., Sewanee, Tenn. and Gustavus-Adolphus, Minn.