Hope snaps Calvin’s 14-game win streak in Holland


Reid Petro

Photo courtesy Reid Petro.

In a fashionably close game for the historic rivalry, Calvin came up short against Hope College, falling 73-70 in front of a sold-out crowd at the DeVos Fieldhouse.

The game was uncharacteristically sloppy on both ends of the court with Calvin committing 13 turnovers and Hope giving up the ball 18 times. Poor rebounding, coupled with Calvin’s inability to get to the foul line, prevented Calvin from gaining any true momentum.

Hope ground out the win with proficient post play and by spreading their scoring. The Dutchmen had six players finish with points in the double figures.

“It was a gutty, gutty performance by both teams,” said Hope head coach Matt Neil. “We got stuff from everybody. Today we were able to show the real Hope team,” he said.

The Dutchmen finished with 41 rebounds compared to Calvin’s 33, and Calvin head coach Kevin Vande Streek said that the rebound differential was probably the difference in the matchup.

“Their presence and their play inside was a huge factor,” said Vande Streek. “We haven’t been outrebounded since first semester.”

The loss was the first for Calvin since Dec. 1, 2012, snapping a 14-game winning streak. Vande Streek was sure to point out the positives that came from the loss, saying that it will help the team develop a stronger mentality.

“I’m disappointed, but we didn’t lose the conference title today,” he said. “We still have work to do but we can learn from playing against a good team.

The Knights shot a respectable 45.9 percent from the field, and though sophomore Jordan Brink and senior Bryan Powell had off nights for shooting, they combined to make some critical threes down the stretch to keep Calvin in contention.

Junior Mickey DeVries turned in a solid performance, notching 10 points on 5-for-9 shooting and 7 rebounds. Senior Tom Snikkers had another strong showing, putting up 14 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists but was less than thrilled with his performance.

“I just didn’t bring it today,” he said, adding that he and the team were going to get back to work in order to work out the kinks.

The result comes as a surprise after Calvin’s 75-49 rout of Hope in January.

“We really focused on having a good start,” said Neil. “I think that the good start propelled us to the finish line.”

Vande Streek said that Hope’s youth and Calvin’s experience were significant factors in Calvin’s previous win, and that they no longer enjoyed that advantage.

“The biggest thing was their experience,” said DeVries about Hope choosing to give their veterans more minutes. “They’ve been around the block — they’re physical,” he said.

This was the 184th meeting between the teams and the last this regular season.

The game was streamed live online to countries all around the globe; however, the stream failed to begin along with the game, causing many viewers to miss the majority of the first half.

Stephanie Vogelzang, a 2007 Calvin alumna, lives in London, England and said she always looks forward to viewing the action via the stream.

“All week we were planning for it because we are five hours ahead. We had it up for about two hours and watched the countdown. I yelled when there were 30 seconds left and then it didn’t start,” she said.

According to sports information staff, a student employee in Grand Rapids made a mistake while setting up the livefeed and needed to reboot the system in order to start the livestream.

Chimes could not reach Calvin audio-visual for comment. Others surrounding the situation either did not know details or did not return a request for comment.

Calvin College, now 20-3 (11-1 in MIAA), will face Trine University on Wednesday at Van Noord Arena.