posted November 9, 1998

Flying Dutch Receive NCAA Volleyball Tournament Bid

The MIAA champion Hope College volleyball team will compete in the NCAA Division III championship tournament for the second year in-a-row.

The Flying Dutch will be part of the six-team Great Lakes Regional tournament to be held Thursday thru Saturday (Nov. 12- 14) at Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio.

Hope's first opponent will be no stranger. On Thursday night the Flying Dutch (32-7) will meet MIAA rival Calvin (20-12) at 8 p.m. Earlier in the evening Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) rivals Muskingum (27-5) and Ohio Northern (19-12) will clash.

The Hope-Calvin winner will advance to Friday action against top-seeded Wittenberg (24-9) while the Muskingum-Ohio Northern winner will meet Mount Saint Joseph, Ohio (30-4). The regional championship match will be Saturday night (7 p.m.).

The Flying Dutch are coached by Maureen Odland who in two seasons at the helm has guided the team to a 60-11 record, two conference championships and back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances.

Hope will be making its third appearance in the NCAA tournament. The Flying Dutch first appeared in the playoffs in 1987 and then went a decade before getting another bid a year ago.

This season the Flying Dutch won the MIAA championship for a third consecutive year finishing a victory ahead of Calvin in the standings.

Hope and Calvin split their matches this season. Calvin won in four games in Grand Rapids, 15-13, 9-15, 15-13, 16-14, while Hope won in Holland in a three-game sweep, 15-13, 15-4, 15-11. Hope is seeded fourth in the tournament while Calvin is seeded fifth.

Hope's 32 victories ties a Hope single season mark first established in 1987. During the season the Flying Dutch defeated Ohio Northern, but lost to Muskingum in a tournament at Wittenberg University. Mount Saint Joseph defeated the Flying Dutch in the championship match of the season-ending Midwest Invitational.

A year ago Ohio Northern defeated the Flying Dutch in the first round of the playoffs in five games, 11-15, 13-15, 15-6, 15-8, 16-14.