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2010 fall sports recap: Six teams earn national tournament

Nick KramerUnder the direction of head coach Brian Diemer, the men’s cross country team captured its 24th consecutive MIAA title including its league-leading 37th crown overall. Calvin took first place at the MIAA jamboree with 17 points and then took first place at the MIAA championships with 19 points.

A mid-season highlight was the Wisconsin- Oshkosh Brooks Invitational with the Knights placing second with 78 points, just 29 points behind top-ranked North Central. The finish allowed Calvin to move up to fourth in the national rankings—a spot Calvin continued to hold throughout the remainder of the regular season.

Calvin hosted the MIAA championships and placed seven runners in the top 10 with junior Nick Kramer (Dyer, Ind.) taking first, junior Dan Kerr (Petoskey, Mich.) taking second, senior Ben Van Wyk (Sussex, N.J.) taking third, senior Alex Wrobel (Arden Hills, Minn.) placing sixth, sophomore Matt VanderRoest (Ann Arbor, Mich.) placing seventh, senior Jake Christiansen (New Ipswich, N.H.) taking eighth and sophomore Rhett Morici (St. Charles, Ill.) taking 10th.

Kramer was named the MIAA’s Most Valuable Runner for the second consecutive year and was named to the All-MIAA first team for the third straight season. He was joined on the All-MIAA first team from Calvin by Van Wyk, Wrobel, Vander Roest, Kerr and Jake Christiansen. Named to the All-MIAA second team were Morici and sophomores Job Christiansen (New Ipswich, N.H.), Greg Whittle (Galesburg, Ill.) and David Vande Bunte (Byron Center, Mich.).

At the Great Lakes Regional meet, hosted by Hope College, Calvin cruised to its 15th consecutive regional crown, posting a firstplace score of 57 points. Kramer took first place individually with a time of 24:57, more than 13 seconds ahead of his nearest competitor. Kramer was one of five Calvin runners in the top 35 as Vander Roest was 11th, Van Wyk 15th, Wrobel 16th, Kerr 18th, Jake Christiansen 24th and Morici 34th. By finishing in the top 35, all seven Calvin runners earned spots on the Great Lakes All-Region team. Kramer was then named the Great Lakes Regional Athlete of the Year for the second consecutive season.

At the NCAA III Championships hosted by Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, Calvin took eighth with a team score of 277 points. Kramer led the Calvin men with a 16th place (24:41) individual finish to claim the first All-America berth of his Calvin cross country career. VanderRoest was Calvin’s second finisher, placing 59th in a time of 25:12 while Kerr was 72nd (25:18), VanWyk 77th (25:20), Morici 135th (25:40), Wrobel 158th (25:50) and Jake Christiansen 178th (25:56).

Jodi HoekstraThe women’s cross country team was also under the leadership of head coach Brian Diemer and claimed the program’s sixth consecutive MIAA title including its 22nd league title in the last 23 years. Ranked nationally throughout the year, the Knights were in a fierce competition with rival and nationally ranked Hope throughout the year for the MIAA and later Great Lakes Regional title.

At the MIAA jamboree, Calvin took first place with a team score of 21 points, 13 points ahead of second-place Hope. At the MIAA championships, hosted by Calvin at the Gainey Athletic Complex Oct. 30, the Knights and Flying Dutch waged the closest finish in MIAA championships history with Calvin edging Hope by a 31-33 score. Calvin claimed the top three individual spots but Hope took five of the next seven spots. Calvin was able to seal the two-point win with an 11thand 14th-place finish from its fourth and fifth runners. Junior Jodi Hoekstra (Homer Glen, Ill.) led the way with a first-place finish in a time of 22:09 while sophomore Alyssa Penning (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was second and senior Gretchen Braymer (Erie, Pa.) third. Senior Samantha Westveer (Kentwood, Mich.) was 11th, freshman Alyssa Oram (Cheboygan, Mich.) 15th and junior Kaitlin Diemer (Caledonia, Mich.) 17th. Hoekstra was named the MIAA’s Most Valuable Runner and was named to the All-MIAA first team for the second straight year. Braymer also earned a spot on the All-MIAA first team for the second straight season while Penning earned her first berth on the All-MIAA first team. Calvin runners that were named to the All-MIAA second team included Westveer, Diemer, Oram and senior Alison Tuuk (Grand Rapids, Mich.).

At the Great Lakes Regional meet hosted by Hope two weeks later, Calvin widened the gap, taking first place with a team score of 69 points, 34 points ahead of second place Hope. The regional title was Calvin’s third consecutive Great Lakes Regional crown. Hoekstra led Calvin with a fourthplace time of 21:48. She was one of three Calvin runners in the top 10 as Penning was ninth and Braymer 10th. All seven of Calvin’s runners finished in the top 35 as Diemer was 22nd, Westveer 24th, Tuuk 27th and Oram 35th. In finishing in the top 35, all seven Calvin runners earned spots on the Great Lakes All-Region team. At the conclusion of the regional meet, head coach Brian Diemer was named the Great Lakes Region Women’s Coach of the Year.

At the NCAA III Championships the following week in Waverly, Iowa, Calvin took ninth with a team score of 354 points. Calvin just missed a pair of All-America (top 35) berths as Hoekstra was 43rd (21:56) and Penning 45th (21:56). Braymer was 61st in a time of 22:06. Rounding out Calvin’s finishers were Oram in 174th, Westveer in 186th, Tuuk in 213th and Diemer in 234th.

men's golf team

Under the guidance of head coach Brian Bolt, the men’s golf team put together an historic year, winning its first-ever MIAA title. Calvin finished the eight-round league season with 2,411 strokes, two strokes ahead of Trine and nine strokes ahead of defending league champion Hope. The Knights captured the league championship in improbable fashion as they trailed league-leading Trine University by 19 strokes heading into the eighth and final league jamboree of the year. At the final MIAA jamboree—hosted by Alma College—Calvin posted a first-place team score of 296 strokes, 21 strokes better than Trine, allowing the Knights to win the final league title by a mere two strokes in one of the closest finishes in MIAA men’s golf history. Senior Eric Doezema (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was part of an unforgettable afternoon for the Knights as he collected a hole in one on the par-three 13th hole to finish in fourth place at the jamboree with a score of 73. Freshman David Veen (Grand Rapids, Mich.) came up with the biggest individual performance for Calvin, collecting medalist honors with a score of 71. Sophomore Dave Sarkipato (Kalamazoo, Mich.) was also sixth at the jamboree with a score of 76.

Senior Jess Hendriksma (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was Calvin’s steadying influence throughout the season as he finished second in the final MIAA season standings with an average of 74.5 strokes-per-round. His average is the second-best single-season average in Calvin’s men’s golf history. For his efforts, Hendriksma earned a spot on the All-MIAA first team. Doezema finished eighth in the final MIAA individual standings (75.9) and earned a spot on the All- MIAA second team.

As a team, Calvin took first place in three of the eight MIAA jamborees with Veen, Doezema, sophomore Ben Kuiper (Grand Rapids, Mich.) and Hendriksma all receiving medalist honors once during the league season.

With the MIAA title, Calvin also clinched an automatic berth to next spring’s NCAA III Championships, scheduled to be held May 11-13 in Greensboro, N.C. The berth will be Calvin’s first in the NCAA III Tournament.

Carlia CantoLed by head coach Jerry Bergsma, the women’s golf team took seventh in the final MIAA standings with 2,305 strokes, averaging 384.2 strokes per round in league play. Calvin had a strong finish to the 2010 MIAA season, finishing sixth at the 36-hole MIAA Tournament with 733 strokes, just four strokes behind fifth-place Adrian and just 11 strokes behind fourth-place Trine.

Sophomore Elise Doezema (Grand Rapids, Mich.) had an outstanding run in the league tournament, finishing with a two-day total of (81-81) 162 strokes to finish in fourth place individually. For her efforts, she was named to the all-tournament team. She also lowered her final MIAA scoring average to 87.2 strokes-per-round, which earned her a spot on the All-MIAA second team.

Doezema was part of a youthful Calvin women’s golf team that included four freshmen and two sophomores. Freshman Carlia Canto (Marysville, Mich.) was one of Calvin’s promising newcomers as she finished 12th in the final MIAA individual standings with a league average of 86.4 strokes per round. Earlier in the year, she became the first recipient of the MIAA’s Women’s Golfer of the Week Award.

Scott HookerUnder the direction of head coach Chris Hughes, the men’s soccer team finished 16-3-5 overall and captured a share of its fourth consecutive MIAA regular season title, finishing 9-2-3 in league play. With just more than weeks left in the regular season, Calvin stood in fourth place in the league standings, but the Knights won their final five conference games to capture a share of the final league crown with rival Hope. Calvin opened the season by winning its first six (non-conference) games. In doing so, Calvin achieved the numberone ranking in the Division III National Coaches Top 25 Poll for the first time in school history.

At the conclusion of the MIAA season, Calvin gained an at-large bid to the NCAA III Tournament and hosted the first two rounds, defeating Ohio Northern 2-0 in the first round and edging Dominican (Ill.) in a penalty-kick shootout 3-1 in a second round game after the contest concluded in a 1-1 double-overtime tie. In the third round, Calvin tied Wisconsin-Whitewater 1-1 but again won a penalty-kick shootout, this time by a 9-8 score. The Knights then bowed in the national quarterfinals to Wisconsin-Oshkosh 1-0, finishing one game shy of reaching the NCAA III Final Four for the second consecutive year.

At the conclusion of the season, Calvin finished sixth in the final d3soccer.com Top 25 poll and seventh in the National Soccer Coaches Association Top 25 poll.

Individually, Calvin had a number of players who received post-season honors. Named to the All-MIAA first team from Calvin were seniors Dan Kmetz (Strongsville, Ohio) and Scott Hooker (Hudsonville, Mich.) and juniors Miles Colago (Anoka, Minn.) and Justin Ahearne (Hudsonville, Mich.). Named to the All-MIAA second team from Calvin were seniors Ryan Bratt (Silver Spring, Md.) and Lucas Wilgenburg (Visalia, Calif.), juniors Brad Heethuis (Jenison, Mich.) and Tyler Vegter (Hudsonville, Mich.) and sophomore Dan Nederhoed (Kentwood, Mich.).

Five Calvin players also received Division III All-Central Region honors from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America with Kmetz and Ahearne named to the first team, Colago named to the second team and Bratt and Hooker named to the third team.

In addition, Bratt and Hooker were both named to the ESPN Academic All-District IV second team.

Kellie HonderdThe women’s soccer team, led by head coach Mark Recker, finished 15-3-2 overall, captured the 2010 MIAA Tournament title and advanced to the NCAA III Tournament for the sixth consecutive year. During its first nine games, Calvin posted a 7-1-1 record, picking up victories over nationally ranked Wheaton (Ill.) and the University of Chicago while earning a tie against nationally ranked Augustana College (Ill.). In conference play, Calvin finished in second place with a 6-1-1 record, ending Calvin’s five-year run of MIAA regular season championships. The Knights rebounded to win their third MIAA tournament title, defeating Kalamazoo 2-1 in the semifinals and regular season champion Alma 3-1 in the championship final, giving the Knights an automatic bid to the NCAA III Tournament.

In the NCAA III Tournament, Calvin bowed to third-ranked Otterbein 1-0 in the first round with the Cardinals scoring the game-winning goal in the closing minutes of play. Otterbein later continued on to reach the NCAA III Final Four.

Individually, several Calvin players received post-season accolades. Senior Carly Prins (Hudsonville, Mich.) was named the MIAA’s Most Valuable Player, becoming the seventh individual in Calvin women’s soccer history to receive the award. Prins was also named to the All-MIAA first team for the fourth straight year, becoming the 12th individual in MIAA women’s soccer history to be so honored. She was joined on the All-MIAA first team from Calvin by senior Kellie Honderd (Hudsonville, Mich.), sophomore Francesca Smith (Bloomington, Ind.) and freshman Elizabeth Drennan (St. Charles, Ill.). Named to the All-MIAA second team from Calvin were sophomore Jillian Honderd (Hudsonville, Mich.) and freshman Ashton Hearn (Port Huron, Mich.). Prins was later named to the Division III All-Central Region first team for the second straight year while Smith was named to the third team. Prins was also named a third team All-American.

Finally, senior Elaine Schnabel (Valparaiso, Ind.) was named to the ESPN Academic All-District IV first team while Prins was named to the second team. Schnabel was then named to the ESPN Academic All-America first team, becoming the third individual in Calvin women’s soccer history to be named an Academic All-American.

volleyball teamWith head coach Amber Warners at the helm, the volleyball team put together an historic season, winning its first national title, defeating the number-one, number-two and number-three ranked teams along the way. Calvin defeated top-ranked Emory University (Atlanta, Ga.) in the national title match in four sets to finish with a final season record of 32-4. Calvin also defeated second-ranked Wittenberg (Ohio) and third-ranked Juniata (Huntingdon, Pa.) during NCAA III Tournament play. The title was one of three for Calvin during the season as the Knights shared the final MIAA regular season title with Hope after finishing 15-1 in league play while also winning a regional title with its four-set win over Wittenberg.

After falling in the MIAA tournament final to rival Hope, Calvin gained an at-large bid to the NCAA III Tournament and began its tournament run with a three-set win over Otterbein and a four-set victory over Heidelberg—a team that had handed Calvin one of its four defeats earlier in the year. In the regional final, Calvin also defeated a team that it had lost to earlier in the year in Wittenberg, as the Knights stunned the Tigers on their home floor. The following week at the Elite Eight round of the NCAA III Tournament in St. Louis, Calvin defeated the University of Massachusetts–Boston in four sets and followed with an epic five-set win over Juniata in the semifinals. Calvin trailed Juniata 2-0 in sets but mounted a comeback effort in set three and never Fall sports recap (continued) Lizzie Kamp Women’s volleyball team Erin VanderPlas looked back. Two days later, Calvin toppled Emory in the championship final 25-14, 25-20, 19-25, 25-23.

At the conclusion of the year, Warners was named the Division III National Coach of the Year by the American Volleyball Coaches Association. Individually, freshman Megan Rietema (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was named the Division III National Freshman of the Year by the AVCA, completing a clean sweep for the setter who was also named the MIAA Freshman of the Year and Great Lakes Regional Freshman of the Year. Junior Rebecca Kamp (Orland Park, Ill.) was named the MIAA’s Most Valuable Player for the second time in her career and earned a spot on the All-MIAA first team for the third straight season. She was joined on the All-MIAA first team from Calvin by Rietema and sophomore Lizzie Kamp (Orland Park, Ill.) while junior Renee DeHaan (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was named to the All-MIAA second team. Rebecca and Lizzie Kamp and Rietema were all named to the Great Lakes All-Region team with Rebecca Kamp later earning her third consecutive spot on the AVCA Division III All-America first team. Lizzie Kamp and Rietema were named to the AVCA Division III Honorable Mention All-America list.

In addition, Rebecca Kamp was named to the ESPN Academic All-District IV second team.