The national champion Hope College volleyball team excelled in the classroom as well during the 2014-15 school year.

Coach Becky Schmidt’s Flying Dutch earned the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award for the seventh consecutive time, the AVCA announced on Wednesday.

The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.

Hope is one of a record 752 college and high school teams to receive the AVCA’s academic honor and one of 140 Division III women’s teams. 

On the court, Hope claimed its first national title in volleyball last November and finished with a 34-2 overall record. The Flying Dutch also were Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association co-champions.

AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer extended a hearty congratulations to all the volleyball coaches whose teams won the AVCA Team Academic Award. 

“Teams do not succeed in the classroom by accident any more so than they do on the court,” DeBoer said. “The same coach who taught them volleyball skills cared enough about their academic achievement to gather their grades, calculate their GPA, and submit a nomination on their behalf. In doing so, these coaches sent a clear message that classroom success is just as important as volleyball success. All involved should celebrate this award!”