Record-setting senior Gunnar Elder will anchor a young Hope College men’s lacrosse team with his skill and experience.
The attacker from East Grand Rapids, Michigan (East Grand Rapids HS) is one of two seniors and 11 upperclassmen for the Flying Dutchmen heading into the 2017 season.
Hope’s roster of 35 players includes 19 freshmen, nine sophomores and five juniors. Head coach Michael Schanhals returns for his fifth varsity season and his 13th with the program overall.
The Flying Dutchmen open their season on Friday, Feb. 10 with two indoor matches in Barrington, Illinois. They face Carthage, Wisconsin and Northland, Wisconsin.
Elder is a returning two-time All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association performer. He set the single-season scoring records last season at Hope with 64 goals, 35 assists and 99 points.
Elder holds three of the top five goalscoring marks in Hope’s varsity history: 49 as a sophomore and 36 as a freshman.
Elder also is the Flying Dutchmen’s career varsity leader with 149 goals, 70 assists and 219 points.
Elder and sophomore midfielder Thomas Sprys-Tellner of Brighton, Michigan (Detroit Catholic Central) will captain Hope this season.
Sprys-Tellner appeared in 16 games last season for the Flying Dutchmen. He totaled 103 groundballs and eight points.
Hope returns three other players who netted 20 goals or more last season, when the Flying Dutchmen posted a 9-7 overall record and a fifth-place MIAA record of 3-4.
Sophomore Gino Battaglia of Lebanon, Ohio (Lebanon) recorded 33 goals and 20 assists in his first season as an attacker.
Senior Zach Weber of Ann Arbor, Michigan (Pioneer) was fourth on the team in scoring last season with 23 goals and 11 assists. He can play attack or midfield.
Sophomore midfielder Matt Harkema of St. Louis Park, Minnesota (St. Louis Park) contributed 21 goals and 10 assists last season.
The Flying Dutchmen must overcome the loss of two defenders: Taylor Dever to graduation and Chris Bosscher to injury.
Junior Joey Williams of Farmington Hills, Michigan (Detroit Catholic Central) returns in goal after starting all 16 games last season.
Hope plays its first three games on the road. The Flying Dutchmen’s home opener is Saturday, March 11 vs. Elmhurst, Illinois at Van Andel Soccer Stadium.