Updated thru 2017 season
Softball became an intercollegiate sport at Hope College in 1975. The Flying Dutch are annually conference contenders and highly regarded in the region.
Kim Grotenhuis '01 was a two-time All-American who pitched three no-hitters in her career.
Laurie Byington '96 was a three-time All-America centerfielder who topped the MIAA in batting three seasons, including a conference-best career average.
Karla Wolters coached collegiate athletics for 36 years, including 23 years at the helm of the Flying Dutch softball team. She retired at the end of the 2010 season. During her career she coached 1,792 athletic contest. Her records by sport were: softball (684-398/515-320 at Hope), volleyball (375-194), field hockey (40-26-7), basketball (24-21) and tennis (14-9). She coached teams with winning records in a season 46 times compared to nine losing campaigns and three .500 marks. The Flying Dutch marked the end of her coaching career by sweeping a home MIAA doubleheader over Olivet on May 1, 2010.
The 1991 Flying Dutch finished third in the nation among NCAA Division III teams with 30 victories. The 1995 Flying Dutch were fifth nationally.
Lisa Walters pitched in seven consecutive games without allowing a run during the 1991 season. She pitched four consecutive complete game shutouts, then pitched three innings as a starter before leaving the game with Hope ahead 7-0, then two more complete game shutouts and finally two innings of a game before allowing a run. That was a total of 47 consecutive shutout innings.
The 1991 Flying Dutch topped NCAA Division III in fielding. The team's .975 fielding average (31 errors in 1,192 chances over 42 games) tied the Division III single season mark first set by Illinois Benedictine in 1983. Junior centerfielder Sherrie Scholten played errorless at her position for the third consecutive year (131 chances). Over her entire career she committed just one error in 193 chances.
Megan VanderMaas became the first freshman pitcher to throw a no-hitter when she blanked Maryville, Mo. 8-0 on her 19th birthday (4/8/06).
The 2006 MIAA champion Flying Dutch won a school-record 32 games, including a 2-2 mark in the NCAA championships.
In 2007, a record 10 Hope players had at least one homerun as the Flying Dutch hit a single-season record 19. The players hitting homeruns were Kelli Duimstra 4, Kylee Brouwer 3, Tara Hamming 2, Maddie Garcia 2, Casey Feltner 2, Angie Randall 2, Jessica Regnerus 1, Laura Tanouye 1, Beth Yahraus 1, and Becca Baker 1.
In 2008, senior teammates Kylee Brouwer and Jessica Regnerus each had the distinction of achieving All-MIAA and All-Region honors a fourth consecutive year.
Wolters Softball Stadium, honoring Karla and Tom Wolters, opened in 2008. The state-of-the-art facility features seating for approximately 250 fans, a new press box and dugouts. There is an adjoining a patio suitable for tailgating.
The Flying Dutch executed a rare triple play in defeating St. Norbert, Wisc. 9-4 in a spring break game in Flordia on March 18, 2009. The game-ending triple play started with a line drive snagged by first baseman Kelli Duimstra who stepped on first base and then fired the ball to shortstop Beth Yahraus who was covering second and was able to catch a retreating St. Norbert baserunner.
The Flying Dutch hit a school-record 11 homeruns in sweeping a doubleheader from Albion, 10-3 (5 HRs) and 12-7 (6 HRs), on April 1, 2009. Three players -- Kelli Duimstra, Beth Yahraus and Andrea Reinecke -- each had three homeruns while collecting one apiece were Erica Smith and Abby Phillips. The barrage raised the team's season total to a school-record 22 homeruns and it only at mid-season.
Karla Wolters coached collegiate athletics for 36 years, including 23 years at the helm of the Flying Dutch softball team. She retired at the end of the 2010 season. During her career she coached 1,792 athletic contests. Her records by sport were: softball (684-398), volleyball (375-194), field hockey (40-26-7), basketball (24-21) and tennis (14-9).
Under first-year coach Mary Vande Hoef, the 2011 Flying Dutch posted a 25-15 record and finished second in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) standings.
Maintaining a perfect 4.0 academic grade point average throughout her collegiate career, Laura Tjepkema '13 was named a CoSIDA Academic All-American as both a junior (2012) and senior (2013).
Senior Peyton Wells homered twice, including a go-ahead grand slam, as the 2015 Flying Dutchmen defeated eighth-ranked Trine 15-10 in the second game of a March 31 doubleheader at Wolters Stadium. The victory ended Trine's MIAA-record, 49-game conference regular-season win streak.
Head coach Mary VandeHoef reached the 100-win mark in her 176th game as head coach on April 6, 2015, during an 11-3, six-inning win against the University of Chicago in Game 2 of a nonleague doubleheader at Wolters Stadium. Hope won the first game 5-3.
Senior first baseman Peyton Wells broke the career RBI record during a 10-7 win against Wisconsin-Whitewater during a first-round win in the NCAA Division III Tournament in Lake Forest, Illinois. She totaled six RBI during the game to pass Kelli Duimstra's previous record of 123. Wells finished her Hope career with 126 RBI.
The 2015 Hope softball team set six team records during a 29-11 season that saw the Flying Dutch finish as regional runner-up: hits (384), home runs (38), doubles (69), slugging percentage (.526), total bases (585) and runs scored (274). They reached the regional final before losing to Lake Forest, Illinois.
Senior centerfielder Autumn Anderson set the Flying Dutch's career stolen base record with 75. The four-time, All-MIAA honoree also collected 199 hits during his career — third-most in team history.
Junior pitcher Sydney Jones set single-season and career strikeouts records for the Flying Dutch during the 2017 season. She totaled 229 strikeouts for the season to give her 482 in her career. She also set school records with 17 wins and 11 shutouts. Her 1.18 ERA was the second-lowest in team history for a single season.
The 2017 Flying Dutch won a share of the regular-season MIAA title, hosted the MIAA Tournament and advanced to the regional finals for the second time in three season. They fell to Trine in the regional championship game.