MIAA championship seasons are being rewarded for the HopeCollege soccer teams as both will compete in the NCAA Division III tournament beginning this weekend.
In the men's tournament, the Flying Dutchmen (17-3) will play Gustavus-Adolphus, Minn. (12-2-3) at the University of Wisconsin at Whitewater on Friday at 1:30 p.m. CT in a first round match. In another Friday match, host Whitewater (14-2-1) will play Wheaton (15-5-1) beginning at 11 a.m. CT. The winners will meet on Saturday at 1 p.m. CT.
Competing in the women's tournament for a third consecutive year, the Flying Dutch (18-2) will travel to Granville, Ohio for a first round game against DePauw, Ind. at 5 p.m. ET Friday. In another Friday first round game, host Denison (14-3-3) will play Frostburg State, Md. (11-5-3) at 7:30 p.m. ET. Friday's winners will meet on Saturday night (6 p.m.) in Granville.
The Flying Dutchmen were outright champions of the MIAA this fall and received an automatic berth in the 57-team field. The Dutchmen will be competing in the NCAA for the eighth time in school history. The last appearance was in 2003 when they also travelled to Whitewater for the first two rounds.
Coach Leigh Sears' Flying Dutch were MIAA co-champions with Calvin this fall. Calvin received the league's automatic berth by virtue of the tie-breaker. Hope received an at-large berth in the 60-team field. Hope bowed to DePauw 1-0 in a second round match of the 2003 tournament.
The tournament continues with sectionals the weekend of November 18-19 and culminates with the final four in Greensboro, N.C. on November 25-26.