The Grand Rapids Community College Cross Country teams traveled to Lansing for the Lansing Community College meet on Friday, Sept. 22 with the men’s team placing third among community colleges and 12th out of 18 teams while the women’s team improved their times along with freshman Emily Adamy running her first collegiate race.
GRCC men’s head coach Robert Hyde said his team has continued to train hard even though their season is underway.
“We are still in our training cycle of our season,” Hyde said. “That means we are trying to race hard but we’re also training hard. We don’t specifically freshen up for each race, but it helps us train for the end of the year, which is the regional meet.”
For the men’s rankings, Hillsdale College placed first among all teams with a score of 41, followed by Davenport’s 57 points and Lansing CC finished third with a score of 59. Southwestern Michigan College got second among community college’s with a score of 266.
Notable teams that GRCC finished above include Cleary University, Oakland Community College, and Olivet College.
Freshman Joseph VanderKooi led all Raider runners placing 46th overall with a time of 27:41 which is a slight improvement compared to the last meet. Sophomore Dane Kehoe finished right behind VanderKooi with a time of 28:18 and got 59th overall. Freshmen Austin Winkle and Anthony Lawlor stuck together for the majority of the race, ending the meet with a time of 28:46 (77th) and 28:50 (80th).
Hyde was impressed with the results of the meet and believes his team is slowly improving to competing for a regional championship.
“With only five guys currently on our team, everybody has to count in every race we have,” Hyde said. “We had three guys run 20 seconds slower than the last race along with the weather being 15 degrees warmer. As a whole, we are going in the right direction and, as we compare ourselves to other teams in the division, we are slowly getting closer to them.”
As for the women’s team, they were once again led by freshman Anna Tubbergen who finished 21st overall and second among community college runners with a time of 20:19. Freshman Elicia Land set her personal record with a time of 21:30 allowing her to finish at 50th overall. Lastly, Adamy, who ran for the Raiders for the first time, finished with a time of 27:06.
GRCC women’s head coach Sharon Becker was impressed with how her runners competed.
“I was happy that all three women were able to run at the meet because we train our bodies the best we can to adapt and endure physically and psychologically the entire race,” Becker said. “A couple of the athletes have supplemented cross training for running because of the pain they experienced but they battled through it. Kenzie Ondersma, our athletic trainer, has been a big part of helping the student-athletes progress so that they will be as healthy as they can on race day.”
The next meet that both teams run at is on Friday, Sept. 29, as the Raiders travel to Marysville to participate in the St. Clair Invite.