This cross country season, the Michigan State University Running Club had just under 200 dues-paying members. This is the highest number the club has had thus far in its history, and is almost double the number of members during the 2012-13 school year (when the current seniors were freshman). Also for the first time, female club officers outnumber male club officers with five to four.
When recruiting for the club, students are encouraged to join based on both social and competitive aspects offered, and the club received a balanced demographic between the two this season. About 51 members arrived in costume for a Halloween run around campus during the last week of October (Sophomore Melanie Sprinkle and Freshman Nick Kilpatrick won the costume contest as Batman and Robin), and members participated in team dinners, front-row football game seating, a chalk run, a corn maze, as well as other social events.
For competition, the club offered five meets this year: Spartan Invitational in East Lansing (41 members); MC5 in Anderson, Indiana (19 members); Spartan Grand Classic in Lansing, Michigan (92 members); NIRCA Regionals in Indianapolis, Indiana (35 members); and NIRCA Nationals in Lexington, Kentucky (67 members).
At Nationals, freshmen Lauren McGrath and Erin O’Donnel competed in the women’s “A” race with Erin Zimmer (SP), Nicole Mosteller(SP), Tarah Thompson (SR), Christina Casali (SR), and Sarah Wallace (SR). The women placed 9th, and Zimmer and Mosteller received All-American titles, placing 12th and 25th overall. New MSU club members Justin Waraniak (graduate student) and freshmen Riley VanPelt and Zach Kuloszewski competed in the men’s “A” race with returning members Jacob Young (SP), Paul Salach (JR) Adam Terwillegar (SR), and Kevin Glime (SR),. The men placed 19th.
The Spartans look forward to the upcoming track seasons with their heads up and their hearts hungry for more competition and fun.