Four Hope athletes competed at NCAA Division III track and field championships in Delaware, Ohio (May 26-28) highlighted by a fourth place finish by All-American high jumper John Donkersloot of Zeeland (Zeeland East HS).
Donkersloot is an NCAA All-American for the third time in his career. Seeded fourth heading into nationals, he cleared 6 feet, 9 inches. The national champion is Wartburg freshman Jonas Elusme who cleared 6 feet, 10 1/4 inches. Donkersloot finished third at nationals as both a sophomore and junior.
Senior Kara Vande Guchte of Hamilton (Hamilton HS) finished 10th among 22 heptathletes. Her point total in the seven-event competition was 4,557. The national champion was Janey Helland of Gustavus-Adolphus with 5,061 points. Vande Gutche was competing at nationals for as third straight year. In 2010 she placed third and in 2009 was 20th. She entered this year's competition seeded 12th
100 Meter Hurdles: 13th place, :15.39 (791 pts.)
High Jump: tied for 7th place, 5-1 3/4 (701 pts.)
Shotput: 19th place, 30-0 3/4 (475 pts.)
200 Meters: 4th place, :25.99 (798 pts.)
Long Jump: 16th place, 16-2 1/4 (540 pts.)
Javelin: 6th place, 113-9 (566 pts.)
800 Meters: 14th place, 2:30.54 (686 pts.)
Final Heptathlon Standings: 10th place, 4,557 points
Senior Nick Rinck of Hudsonville (Hudsonville HS) and sophomore Sarah Venlet of Zeeland (Holland Christian HS) were unable to advance to the finals in the 400-meter hurdles. Competing at nationals for the first time and Hope's record holder in the event (:52.54), Rinck was seeded fifth among the 19 qualifiers. He entered the meet nursing a hamstring injury and about three-quarters into the race came up lame and was unable to finish, according to coach Kevin Cole. Venlet tied her alltime Hope record (1:02.66) by placing 14th. Competing at nationals for the second straight year, she was seeded 22nd among the 23 qualifiers.