HOLLAND -- The Flying Dutchmen will have to wait until the second round to begin play in this year's NCAA Division III men's basketball championships.
Hope has received a first round bye and has been named to host a second round game on Saturday at the DeVos Fieldhouse against the winner of a Thursday matchup between Capital, Ohio (23-5) and Bethany, W.Va. (17-10).
Tipoff will be 7 p.m. The public sale of tickets will begin Thursday at the DeVos Fieldhouse. Ticket prices are: reserved seat, $8; general admission, $6; students and children, $3.
The Division III field consists of 59 teams. Five teams, including Hope, received a first round bye.
Hope gained the automatic berth of the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) by winning the regular season title and conference tournament championship.
Bethany received an automatic berth as champions of the Eastern College Athletic Association while Capital, a member of the Ohio Athletic Association (OAC) is a Pool C qualifier. Pool C qualifiers are teams who did not receive a conference automatic berth.
Hope has played Capital three times over the years and owns a 2-1 edge. The last meeting was a 73-71 Capital win in 1991. Capital defeated Hope 83-77 in overtime in a 1984 NCAA tournament game played at Greencastle, Ind. Hope has no basketball history with Bethany. Capital is appearing in the NCAA tournament a seventh time and Bethany for the sixth time.
The Flying Dutchmen are making their 19th appearance in the Division III championships, the 21st alltime (College Division in 1950s). This will be the 10th time that Hope has hosted a first/second round game. Hope's alltime record in the Division III championships is 22-20.
A year ago Hope advanced to the Elite Eight, bowing to Washington, Mo. 58-55 in the sectional final. Hope finished second in the nation in 1996 and 1998.
Twice this year the Flying Dutchmen have put together nine-game winning streak en route to posting a 24-3 record. Hope has won 20-or-more games six of the last seven years and 16 times under veteran coach Glenn Van Wieren.