posted February 16, 2002

Hope Hockey Club Receives Bid to National Tournament

The Hope College ice hockey club has earned an invitation to the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) Men's Division III National Championship Tournament, slated for March 1-3 in Atlanta, Georgia. The 2002 ACHA Men's Division III National Championship Tournament is being hosted by the Georgia Tech hockey team.

The American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) has been the nation's premier organization for collegiate non-varsity ice hockey since is inception in 1992. Nearly 200 member teams now compete in three men's divisions and one women's division.

The 2001-2002 season marks the third season of the ACHA Men's Division III. Originally designed to provide a competitive hockey environment for colleges and universities with student bodies in the 5,000 to 10,000 student range, the ACHA Division III has grown to include over 50 collegiate teams from Atlanta to New York City, and from the Chesapeake Bay to the Rocky Mountains.

With the expansion of Division III to include four regions -- East, South, Central, and West -- the national tournament expanded as well, growing from eight to 12 teams. Joining the host team, Georgia Tech, and the defending national champions, the University of Wyoming, will be two additional teams from both the South and West regions and three teams each from the East and Central regions.

EAST REGION: Robert Morris (PA), Slippery Rock, Georgetown

SOUTH REGION: Georgia Tech, Florida, Georgia

CENTRAL REGION: Muskegon CC, Hope, Tennessee

WEST REGION: Wyoming, UC-San Diego, North Texas

The Hope hockey club was founded for the 1996-1997 season by Hope students. The team is a member of the Michigan Collegiate Hockey Conference (MCHC), consisting of a seven colleges and universities throughout Michigan. The other MCHC members are Grand Valley State University, Northwood University, Muskegon Community College, Central Michigan University, Saginaw Valley State University, and traditional rival Calvin College.

The Dutchmen play all home contests at The Edge ice center in Holland, ten minutes from the Hope campus, where the team has its own locker room and choice times for its Friday and Saturday contests. The team continues to improve through the recruitment of top notch local talent, coupled with an aggressive style that is the cornerstone of the hockey club.