The Hope volleyball team will have its first international experience when the Flying Dutch travel to Switzerland to prepare for the upcoming season.

Coach Maureen Dunn's Dutch will depart on Thursday, Aug. 7. By the time they return on August 18, they will have practiced and played matches in the Swiss cities of Geneva, Bern and Glarus.

The international roster is comprised of players from the 2002 varsity and jayvee teams. By NCAA rule, players new to the 2003 team may not participate.

When the international travelers return, they'll join first-year varsity candidates who will have begun practice back on campus. The team launches its season the weekend of Aug. 29-30 with a tournament at Elmhurst, Ill.

Players on the Swiss tour include seniors Katie Hall of Holland, Mich., McKenna Troyan of Sylvania, Ohio and Anna Eriks of Holland, Mich.; juniors Meredith Mick of Roscommon, Mich., and Kelly Hutchins of Livonia, Mich.; and sophomores Lindsey Schaap of Holland, Mich., Shawna Buche of Saranac, Mich., Julie VanderSlice of New Era, Mich., Natalie Hoogeveen of Orange City, Iowa.

Joining the team will be 2003 Hope graduates Martha Luidens of Holland, Mich., Alexis Mick of Roscommon, Mich., Kara Van Assen of Jenison, Mich., and Laura Hahnfeld of Midland, Mich.

Several Hope athletic teams have made international trips over the years, including men's and women's basketball, football, men's soccer and softball.