The Flying Dutchmen will be seeking to stay in contention for a conference football championship in their final home game of the season on Saturday, Oct. 27 against Trine. Kickoff at Holland Municipal Stadium will be 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast and streamed by 92.7-FM
The Hope/Trine series started when the Thunder joined the MIAA in 2004. Hope leads the all-time series 6-3, including a 28-23 victory in 2011.
This will be Hope’s final home game of the season. It will be Senior Day. Seniors to be honored include Nate Barnes (Laingsburg/Laingsburg HS), Paul Brucker (Grosse Pointe/Grosse Pointe North HS), Kevin Kandow (Clio/Clio HS), Mark Karam (Grosse Pointe Woods/Warren DeLaSalle HS), Brian Lynn (Holland/Holland HS), Jordan Meyers (Kent City/Kent City), Mark Soisson (Gobles/Otsego HS), Ben Van Ausdall (Hudsonville/Unity Christian HS), Steve Van Hoven (Grand Rapids/Grand Rapids Christian HS), JT VanLaan (Caledonia/South Christian HS), and Justin Warren (Alto/Caledonia HS). Also, senior Kyle Kreps, son of head coach Dean Kreps, has been the team manager all four years.
Hope has a three-game winning streak. Trine did not play last Saturday.
Hope has a nearly two-to-one advantage in takeaways-to-turnovers. The Flying Dutchmen have intercepted 14 opponent passes this season and recovered 11 fumbles for a 25-14 advantage. Last Saturday Hope intercepted five Kazoo passes. The Hope single game record is seven in a 1967 victory over Adrian (19-7). Junior Santino DiCesare ((Dorr/Wayland HS) and sophomore Kirby Crook (Beech Grove, Ind./Beech Grove HS) each have five interception. The Hope record for a season is nine by Joe Diekevers in 2004. DiCesare has a pass interception in each of the last three games.
Each Trine features an outstanding placekicker with perfect stats in league games. Hope’s Evan Finch (Ann Arbor/Pioneer HS) is 14-for-14 on PATS and 1-for-1 on field goals in four MIAA games while Trine’s Tyler Keck is 6-for-6 on PATs and 6-for-6 on field goals, including a long of 40 yards. In all games, Finch is 28-for-30, including a current streak of 15 in-a-row.
Hope quarterback Michael Atwell tops the MIAA in passing averaging 207.2 yards per league game while Trine quarterback Ryan Hargraves leads the league in total offense at 202.2 yards per game. The difference is that Hargraves has rushed for positive 115 yards while Atwell is a negative 41 yards when running. In league games Hargraves has completed 70% of his passes compared to Atwell’s 52% completion rate.