Over the past Friday and Saturday, Hope’s ninth ranked men’s golf team competed in the MIAA championship tournament. The Flying Dutchmen came into the tournament with a strong lead over runner-up Calvin College but nonetheless had to fight hard for the win. On Friday, the first day of the tournament, Hope came out first with a score of 284, 4 over par, one stroke ahead of runner up Kalamazoo College.
Their score brought their tournament lead up to 44 strokes over all of the MIAA matches through the season. Senior Josh Gibson and junior Daniel Settecerri both finished the day with scores of 70, tying for third place at evenpar. Seniors Andrew Goble and Ben Kramer also tied with a score of 72. Coming into the the second day of MIAA play, the Flying Dutchmen were intent on the win. They played hard, putting up another score of 284 for the MIAA Champion title, beating the runner-up, Adrian College, by 5 points.
The team put in an overall MIAA score of 1718, followed by Calvin at 1770. Head coach Scott Lokers commented on the team’s performance: “I remember Tim Schoonveld (Hope’s co-AD) told me once that there are not many teams who get to play for a championship, so when you’re in the hunt for one, it’s special. I’ll never forget that. We’ll never take winning a championship for granted, and doing it with these guys has been a ton of fun. They are a great group. I’m very proud of them.” Gibson and Settecerri tied again in the second day of play with scores of 140 for the weekend. Kramer finished with a score of 143. Gibson took the overall individual MIAA championship with a total score of 414 points, 11 strokes ahead of runner up Nick Ludka from Kalamazoo. He has also taken the lowest MIAA average for a Hope golfer, at 69 for the MIAA season, ahead of his 2017 record of 71.6. This tournament concludes play for the fall season, with the MIAA NCAA Division III national championship qualifier to be scheduled for April.