posted June 14, 2003

Baseball Mideast Regional Game Notes

Mideast Regional
at Ohio Wesleyan University
Thursday-Saturday, May 15-17, 2003

The Flying Dutchmen posted a school-record third consecutive 20-win campaign this spring, finishing 20-15 overall and 16-2 in conference games.

In 10 seasons under coach Stu Fritz, the Flying Dutchmen have won six conference championships and posted an overall 195-154-2 record.

This is the second NCAA tournament experience for several players, including five who were starters -- shortstop Casey Glass (then the third baseman), centerfielder Kyle Blackport, rightfielder Mike VanBeek, catcher Eric MacKenzie and first baseman B.J. Maas (then the DH).

As a freshman starter, catcher Eric MacKenzie was voted to the Midwest Regional all-tournament team in 2001, batting 4-for-7 with a pair of doubles and three runs scored.

Hope has never played Ohio Wesleyan or Anderson in baseball. In 1992 the Flying Dutchmen defeated Benedictine 6-4 in a game played in Panama City, Fla.

Hope's starting pitching rotation has been solid this spring. Sophomore Jon Deming is undefeated (5-0), junior Kenny Bart (6-2) has six complete games in eight starts, and Widenmier has gone the distance five times.

Five seniors received all-conference first team recognition led by rightfielder Mike Van Beek who was voted the league's most valuable player. Van Beek batted .404 this season and in conference games had a 100% slugging average buoyed by a league-record seven homeruns. He is Hope's alltime leader in hits, doubles, total bases and RBIs. Hope's other first-team all-conference honorees include senior first baseman B.J. Maas, senior shortstop Casey Glass, senior centerfielder Kyle Blackport and senior pitcher Matt Widenmier. Maas is Hope's alltime homerun leader with 30 in three seasons, including 11 this year. Glass was the all-conference third baseman in 2002, but switched to shortstop this spring where he achieved the same distinction. Blackport is a three-time all- conference honoree. Widenmier has posted an 11-4 record the past two seasons, including 5-3 this spring.

With a robust .337 team batting average, including 31 homeruns, all but one of Hope's starters are batting above .300. Freshman second baseman Jon Edmondson leads the team in average (.463).

Junior catcher Eric Mac Kenzie, who was named to the Regional all-tournament team as a freshman (2001), has a .371 average.

Senior Mike VanBeek was voted to the 2003 Verizon Academic All-District team. A second team honoree, Van Beek majored in history.

Hope in the NCAA Tournament

1998 - Mideast Regional at Canton Ohio
Marietta, Ohio 4, Hope 1
Mary Washington, Va. 11, Hope 10

2001 - Midwest Regional at Bloomington, Ill.
Hope 2, Wartburg, Iowa 1
Wisconsin-Whitewater 4, Hope 3
Westminster, Mo. 6, Hope 4

2003 - Mideast Regional at Delaware, Ohio
Hope, Ohio Wesleyan, Anderson, Ind., Benedictine, Ill.

Probable Hope College Starters

1B - B.J. Maas (senior from Jenison, Mich.)
2B - Jon Edmondson (freshman from Grand Rapids, Mich.)
SS - Casey Glass (senior from Hudsonville, Mich.)
3B - Kyle Trapp (sophomore from Grand Rapids, Mich.)
LF - Aaron Quimby (junior from Quincy, Mich.)
CF - Kyle Blackport (senior from Grand Rapids, Mich.)
RF - Mike VanBeek (senior from Hudsonville, Mich.)
C - Eric MacKenzie (junior from Alpena, Mich.)
DH - Clisby Jarrard (senior from Barrington, Ill.)

P - Kenny Bart (junior from Jenison, Mich.)
P - Jon Deming (sophomnore from Portage, Mich.)
P - Matt Widenmier (senior from Midland, Mich.)

RRP - Bruce Lund (sophomore from Reed City, Mich.)
RRP - Christian Viel (junior from Big Rapids, Mich.)
LRP - Andrew Vlasak (sophomore from Grosse Pointe, Mich.)