Jacquelyn Schwark remembers all the preseason conditioning she and her Hope College basketball teammates did, along with four months of practices, since the 2017-18 season started in October.
All the sweat and work have the fifth-ranked Flying Dutch on the cusp of another Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association regular-season championship.
Hope is one game away from its 16th league title in team history after an 86-33 win against Adrian on Wednesday at DeVos Fieldhouse.
The Flying Dutch (23-1 overall, 14-1 MIAA) can clinch at least a title share with a win at Olivet Saturday. Sixth-ranked Trine (22-2, 14-1) also can claim a piece of the championship with a home win vs. Kalamazoo on Saturday.
"It's exciting," Schwark said asked about being one game away from the second MIAA title of her career. The senior co-captain from Fraser, Michigan (Lutheran HS) was a member of Hope's 2016 league champions.
"We've got a lot of season left, but we're looking at the next game," Schwark said. "The opportunity to win a championship on Saturday is a credit to how hard he worked since we started. You don't have an opportunity to win a championship unless you grind throughout the whole season."
The Flying Dutch kept on track on Wednesday by equaling a DeVos Fieldhouse record with 13 3-pointers extending their win streak to five games.