by Alan Babbitt
The Hope College softball team is projected to be in the thick of the race for the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship again this spring.
The Flying Dutch finished third in the MIAA Preseason Coaches Poll with 48 points behind preseason favorite Calvin College and Trine University.
Coach Mary VandeHoef and the Flying Dutch are coming off one of the best seasons in school history.
The Flying Dutch established a school record with 34 wins in 2018 while advancing to the NCAA Division III Super Regional. They were MIAA Tournament champions and NCAA regional champions.
The senior from Ann Arbor, Michigan (Pioneer HS) finished with the second-highest batting average on the team last season at .373.
The Flying Dutch are scheduled to open their 2019 schedule on Monday, March 4 at Manchester College (Indiana).