The Flying Dutchmen have captured their fourth Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) men's golf championship in five years.
Coach Bob Ebels' Dutchmen won their sixth league tournament in seven outings Monday to finish 44 strokes ahead of runnerup Calvin and 50 ahead of defending MIAA champion Olivet.
The Flying Dutchmen placed five golfers among the league's top 10 led by junior Ryan Shedd of Coldwater, Mich. (Coldwater HS) who ended the seasonal medalist with an average of 74.0 strokes per tournament.
Shedd's average is the second best for a Hope player in league tournament play. The best average was 72.4 strokes by Eric Wohlfield in 1998.
It marks the fourth straight year that a Hope golfer has been the conference medalist. In each season it was a different golfer -- Aaron Vandenberg in 2000, Eric Wohlfield in 2001, Justin Spyker in 2002 and now Shedd. Hope has now crowned 14 MIAA men's golf medalists in its history. From 1947-1985 there were five honorees and since 1986 there have been nine.
Hope ended the seasoon with a team average of 304 strokes, topping the previous MIAA record of 304.7 strokes by Olivet in 2002.
The championship is the tenth in school history. There were just two conference championship teams from 1934-85 and since 1986 there have been eight, including four under coach Ebels.
Achieving All-MIAA first team honors for being among the top six golfers for the season were Shedd, junior Justin Spyker of Portage, Mich. (Portage Central HS) and senior captain Jeff Melville of Grandville, Mich. (Jenison HS). Spyker, the 2002 conference medalist, averaged 76.7 strokes per round while Melville finished at 77.5.
Receiving All-MIAA second team recognition were junior Kody Taylor of Greenville, Mich. (Greenville HS) and freshman Ryan Otto of St. Joseph, Mich. (Lake Michigan Catholic HS) who averaged 77.7 and 79.3 respectively.
Other members of the team are Nate Golomb, a freshman from Schoolcraft, Mich. (Schoolcraft HS); Gabe Hall, a sophomore from Coopersville, Mich. (Coopersville HS); Brian Hammer, a sophomore from Williamsburg, Mich. (Elk Rapids HS); Alden Hoksbergen, a sophomore from Holland, Mich. (West Ottawa HS); and Aaron Peacock, a freshman from Dearborn, Mich. (Divine Child HS).