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Men’s basketball falls to Hope 73-70

Saturday, February 09, 2013

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Box Score

Story by Mitch Blankespoor,  Photo Credit: Sandy Palmatter

HOLLAND, MI – The 184th meeting between Calvin and Hope took place Saturday afternoon in front of a sold out DeVos Fieldhouse on the campus of Hope College.  The Flying Dutchmen defeated rival Calvin 73-70, marking the Knights’ first defeat since falling to Carthage in the MIAA/CCIW Challenge back on Dec. 1 of 2012.

Hope, who came into the game with a 14-8 record on the season and 9-2 in MIAA play, got out to an early lead four minutes into the game.  Freshmen Alex Eidson (Grand Haven/Grand Haven HS) hit the game’s first basket; a long three-pointer from the top of the arc.  Calvin sophomore Tyler Dykstra (Holland/Holland Christian) dunked on a pass from senior Tom Snikkers (Hudsonville/Unity Christian) to cut Hope’s lead to 5-4.  Two baskets from Hope senior Nate Snuggerud (Zeeland/Zeeland East) gave the Flying Dutchmen an 11-5 lead at the first media timeout.

Calvin, who came into the contest boasted a 20-2 record including 11-0 in MIAA play, responded with an 9-3 run of its own.  Snikkers, Mickey De Vries (Lansing/Lansing Christian) and Bryan Powell (Wyoming/Wyoming Park) all hit field goals to fuel the Knights’ run. 

The Knights took their first lead with 9:53 remaining on a basket from Snikkers.  Calvin earned its biggest lead of the first half, 24-17, on a 15-foot jump shot from junior center Tyler Kruis (Grandville/Calvin Christian). 

The Flying Dutchmen cut Calvin’s lead to two points on an up-and-under post move from senior Chase DeMaagd (Woodland/Barry County Christian) with 1:24 remaining in the first half. 
\ Kruis answered with a three-pointer to put the Knights up 34-29 with a minute to play, but DeMaagd responded with an offensive rebound and put back.  Calvin led 34-31 at halftime.

DeMaagd led all scorers at the half with 10 points.  Snikkers ended the first half with eight points and seven rebounds.  De Vries was not far behind scoring eight points and grabbing six rebounds. 

We gave up eight offensive rebounds in the first half,” said Calvin head coach Vande Streek in a post-game interview.  “We needed to do a better job of boxing out.”

Team statistics were dead even in the first half.  Hope converted on one more free throw while Calvin held a 19-18 rebound advantage. 

Calvin scored the first basket of the second half on a layup from Kruis.  Hope responded with a 9-2 run fueled by five points from Eidson to give the Flying Dutchmen a 40-38 lead.
Hope would lead the contest until a Mickey De Vries layup tied the game at 48 apiece with 11:34 remaining. 

Hope held a slim two-point lead two minutes later until senior Billy Seiler (Chillicotte, Ill./Valley Central) hit a three-pointer from the top of the arc to give the Flying Dutchmen a 58-53 lead with 6:11 remaining.

Calvin sophomore Jordan Brink (Dyer, Ind./Illiana Christian) answered with a long triple of his own on Calvin’s next possession.

The Knights played great defense on Hope’s next possession, but desperation triple banked in for Hope senior Nate Snuggerud (Zeeland/Zeeland East) with one second on the shot clock. 

Once again, Calvin called on Brink to answer.  Once again, he did, nailing a three-pointer from the far side wing to pull the Knights within two. 

Calvin could not regain the lead, however.  The Flying Dutchmen went up two points twice in the final three minutes, and both times the Knights answered with layups from Kruis. 

The pivotal bucket came with 33 seconds to play.  Hope got the ball into the post, and Van Arendonk hit a left-handed hook shot to give the Flying Dutchmen a 69-67 lead. 

Brink attempted a three-pointer six seconds later which fell short.  Eidson hit both free throws after being fouled.  Hope led 71-67. 

A deep three pointer from Powell cut the deficit to a single point with just 1.9 seconds remaining.  After Seiler connected on both free throws, Calvin could not get a shot off in the final second, and left the De Vos Fieldhouse with its first loss in 15 games.

“That is how a rivalry game is supposed to be played,” said Hope head coach Matt Neil.  “Two very good teams fought hard today.  We were fortunate to come out ahead at the end.”

Both teams finished with balanced scoring.  The Knights were led by Snikkers with 14 points and nine rebounds.  Powell, Kruis, De Vries and Brink all finished in double-digits in scoring.

Freshman Ben Gardner (Carmel, Ind./Carmel HS) led Hope with 16 points.  Van Arendonk and DeMaagd finished with 12 points.  Three other Flying Dutchmen finished with 11 points. 

Snikkers scored six of his 14 points in the second half.  He was held 0-4 from beyond the three point arc.

“We didn’t bring it today,” Snikkers said.  “That starts with me.  I’m a senior and a leader on this team. I did not get the job done.”

Hope shot 19-26 from the charity stripe while Calvin shot just 8-16.  Hope also held the advantage in rebounds, outrebounding the Knights 41-33.

“I can’t remember the last time we have been outrebounded,” Vande Streek said.  “We play fragmented.  We need to play with a little more consistency.”

With its loss, #13 Calvin drops to 20-3 and 11-1 in the MIAA this season.  The Knights are currently one game ahead of Hope, who sits at 15-8 and 10-2 in the MIAA.

Calvin returns to action Wed., Feb. 13, when it hosts the Trine University Thunder. 

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