posted October 23, 2004

Flying Dutchmen are MIAA Golf Champions

The Flying Dutchmen are champions of the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) for the fifth time in six years, but this year's accomplishment came none too easy.

Coach Bob Ebels' Dutchmen culminated a month-long come-from-behind effort by finishing ahead of season-long frontrunner Tri-State in the final tournament and the final standings by a slim two strokes.

After four conference tournaments the Flying Dutchmen trailed Tri-State by 21 strokes. Hope went on to finish ahead of the Thunder in the next four tournaments, but it wasn't until the season's final round that the Dutchmen could totally erase the deficit.

Hope freshman Tommy Yamaoka of Zeeland, Mich. (Zeeland East HS) captured conference medalist honors heading the field over the season's eight tournaments with an average of 73.8 strokes per 18-hole round. It marks the seventh straight year that a Hope golfer has been the league medalist. Over the past five years, Hope's medalist has been a different golfer each season.

Another Hope freshman, Matt Lapham of Brighton, Mich. (Brighton HS), joined Yamaoka on the All-MIAA team finishing with a 76.0 season average.

Seniors Justin Spyker of Portage, Mich. (Portage Central HS) and Ryan Shedd of Coldwater, Mich. (Coldwater HS) achieved All-MIAA second team honors tying for eighth place in the players standings at 76.4 strokes per round.