Sports: February in review
The sports teams have been very busy in the month of February. Here’s a quick recap of what we think the biggest stories of the month were.
10. Senior basketball player Carissa Verkaik has played her last collegiate basketball game. She was recently named a finalist for the Jostens Trophy, which recognizes excellence on the court, in the classroom and in the community. She finishes on the top of the scoring list with 2,236 points. That point total puts her in third on Calvin’s all time scoring list for both men and women behind Mark Veenstra and Steve Honderd. She also finishes the season third on the points per season list behind herself. She also holds the fifth spot on that list. She has the block record with 440, the rebounds record with 1071 and the MIAA scoring record with 1,219. She’s only the second woman to score more than 1,000 points in the MIAA.
9. Four of the seniors from the women’s basketball team have helped the Knights win 100 games in the last four years. This is the first time players have won 100 games in a career in women’s basketball history at Calvin. Those four seniors are Julia Hilbrands, Kelsey Irwin, Carissa Verkaik and Ally Wolffis. After the women’s last game, Irwin had tied the three-point baskets in a career with 187.
8. In the championship swim meet, Calvin’s women defeated Hope by 38 points. Senior Stephie Fox, freshman Michaela Rookus, senior Elizabeth Counsell and sophomore Kathryn Wrobel won the 800-meter freestyle relay. Wrobel also won the 500-meter free. Rookus took the 200 individual medley. Senior Samantha Klaasen won both diving events. Senior Kristy Kinzer, Counsell, senior Rachel Colasurdo and Rookus won both the 400- and 200-meter medley relays and set the MIAA record in the 200-meter with a time of 1:45.84. Counsell also won the 100- and 200-meter breaststrokes.
7. Men’s swim and dive came in second in the MIAA championships. This is their highest finish in over twenty years. Freshman Caleb Meindertsma set the record for the 1650-meter freestyle. In the MIAA Championship meet, junior Andrew Mitchell, freshman Johnson Cochran, senior Mark Rushlow and freshman Mitchell Schroder combined to win the 400-meter medley relay. Rushlow also won the 100-meter butterfly. Meindertsma won the 1650 freestyle as well.
6. The indoor track team is sending junior Nicole Michmerhuizen to the national championships in Naperville, Ill. She is running the 5,000-meter run. She is ranked fourth in the nation for D-III in this event. She qualified for the 5,000-meter and the 10,000-meter in the outdoor season last spring.
5. The All-MIAA teams were announced in February. For women’s swim: Samantha Klaassen, Elizabeth Counsell, Kristy Kinzer, Michaela Rookus, Sarah Roth, Erika Waugh and Kathryn Wrobel. For men’s swim: Johnson Cochran, Caleb Meindertsma, Andrew Mitchell, Mark Rushlow and Travis Vincent. For women’s basketball: Carissa Verkaik and Kayla Engelhard were named first team, Julia Hilbrands was named second team. For men’s basketball: Tom Snikkers and Bryan Powell were named first team, Tyler Kruis was named second team.
4. The men’s basketball made it to the NCAA tournament for the first time in seven years. Unfortunately, due to the NCAA rankings, the higher-ranked Knights were given an away game at the lower ranked Rose-Hulman Engineers. The Knights proved it to taking the game with a 20-point advantage.
3. Two women have been named MIAA MVP. The first was diver Sam Klaasen. This was Klaasen’s third time being named MIAA’s Most Valuable Diver and the seventh time in the nine year history of this award that a Calvin diver as received this award. The other woman to receive the award was Verkaik for the women’s basketball team. She is the first women’s basketball player in MIAA history to win the award all four years of her college career. In fact, there has only been one men’s basketball player to receive the award four times, that being Calvin’s Mark Veenstra from 1974-1977.
2. The men’s lacrosse team has had five games already and they were able to score the first goal in their first game. This historic first varsity goal was scored by junior Casey Harless. They were able to record a win in their fifth game of the season against Defiance, 5-4.
1. Calvin won three MIAA championships this month: men’s basketball and women’s swimming being won outright and women’s basketball being shared with Hope. This is the men’s first MIAA championship since the 2009-2010 season. The women’s swim team is on a eight-year win streak. Women’s basketball team has won a portion of the last three titles.