by Alan Babbitt
Forward Preston Granger shouldered a lot for a young Hope College men's basketball team this season.
The junior from Lansing, Michigan (Lansing Christian HS) responded in a big way for the Flying Dutchmen and proved to be difficult to defend.
Granger earned All-Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association honors for the first time in his career. He is one of six first-team selections.
"We have asked him to carry a big load this year, and he responded as the second-leading scorer and rebounder in the conference," head coach Greg Mitchell said. "Preston would be the first person to trade personal achievements for team success, which is something I have a lot of respect for. He's a phenomenal young man who will do anything for his teammates.
"He understands the importance of how to serve as a captain. I'm proud of the way he has represented our program."
In 14 MIAA games this season, Granger averaged 22.8 points and 9.5 rebounds per game while helping the Flying Dutchmen qualify for the MIAA Tournament. He shot 61.0 percent from the field against league opponents.
Overall, Granger contributed 20.8 points and 8.0 rebounds over 25 regular-season games. He is second among MIAA players at 61.1 percent field-goal shooting.
"His improvement since arriving on campus his freshman year has been remarkable and it's due to his desire to be coached and to put the work in," Mitchell said. "He still has more room to grow and improve. I'm confident he'll take another big step forward leading up to his senior season next year."