posted June 2, 2009

Hope Tops DIII in Women's Basketball Attendance

The Hope women's basketball team led the nation in average home attendance among all NCAA Division III programs during the 2008-09 season.

It marks the second time since moving to DeVos Fieldhouse four years ago that the Flying Dutch have led the nation's 420 Division III women's basketball programs in home attendance.  Coach Brian Morehouse's Dutch averaged 1,269 fans over 17 home dates.

Hope also hosted the NCAA Final Four, attracting an average of 1,686 fans over four games, but those didn't figure into Hope's season average since the Flying Dutch were not playing in them.

The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) ranked third among Division III conferences, averaging 422 fans over a cumulative 101 home dates. Rival Calvin ranked third with an average of 1,055 fans at its new Van Noord Fieldhouse. Hope and Calvin accounted for two-thirds  of the total attendance at MIAA member sites (31,061 of 46,367).

Division III members as a whole averaged 239 fans per home date (5,029 home games). Division I members as a whole averaged 1,612 fans per home date.

The Flying Dutch also led Division III in home attendance in 2005-06, their inuagural year at DeVos, averaging 1,329 fans per game game.  In 2006-07 Hope ranked fourth with an average of 1,224 fans and in 2007-08 were second at 1,107. 

The Flying Dutch, who posted an overall 28-2 record, were 17-0 on their home court.  The season's largest crowd (2,575) watched the Flying Dutch defeat Saint Mary's to avenge their only MIAA loss of the season, 84-59 on January 31.

Hope's four-season record at DeVos Fieldhouse is 60-1. In 13 seasons under coach Morehouse the Flying Dutch are 173-20 (.896) on their home floor.

The Flying Dutch will enter the 2009-10 season with a home floor winning streak of 49 in-a-row.  The season will begin on Nov. 17 with a home game against Madonna.