Lansing Community College cross country teams begin national championship quest

LANSING, Mich. — The Lansing Community College cross country teams have been a powerhouse program. The women’s team won the NJCAA D-2 national championship last year. The men’s team came in fifth.

“If you’re going to do something in life, you might as well try do it the best you can,” head cross country coach Jim Robinson said.

That’s been the motto for Robinson. He’s been the head coach for 15 years. He only gets to work with athletes for two years but runs the program like a four-year school. The results are paying off.

“It honestly doesn’t feel real. To this day I feel like we didn’t win. You go home at the end of the day, and yeah, you have a ring but like it didn’t feel real,” women’s runner Katelyn Stone said.

The men’s team is trying to take after the women’s team this year and win their own national title. The women’s team’s mission is to do exactly as they did last year.

“It’s just a big step forward. It was disappointing. But overall, we need to learn from our mistakes last year, and this year, solidify our team. Hopefully this year we can come out on top,” men’s runner Kobe Blanco said.

Robinson has reached heights most coaches don’t get to, but getting to work with a new group puts a smile on his face each year.

“I discovered I really like working with college-aged athletes. I just find it extremely rewarding,” Robinson said.

Both teams start their season on Thursday running a 5k event at Olivet College.

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