Monday, February 26, 2024

Robertson found home in Div. III

In 2015, Chris Robertson traded in life as a D-1 redshirt at Hartford University in favor of Plattsburgh’s red and white soccer jersey.

Now a junior, Robertson doesn’t have a lot of downtime, splitting his academic years between the soccer and baseball seasons.

For both teams, he sports the number 31, playing a forward position in soccer and outfield in baseball.

“I like them both,” Robertson said, unable to pick a favorite between the two. “But I guess I’m a little bit better as a soccer player.”

In addition to Plattsburgh’s affordability compared to Hartford’s, his decision to transfer was swayed by gaining playing time and the ability to play for both teams.

Men’s soccer assistant coach Geoff Spear, who’s spent about two decades collectively coaching the team, admires the player’s hard-working character.

“I think he’s very driven as both a player and a person,” Spear said. “He always strives to put his best foot forward.”

Spear said that Plattsburgh’s program has offered unique opportunities to a handful of athletes over the years.

“We’ve had a lot of D-1 kids who weren’t satisfied, who were looking for something else, and we gave that to them.”

Up until recently, Robertson had started most games, but a knee injury in the off-season has forced him to step back.

“He’s still in recovery. We’re just trying to get him healthy, especially with the conference games coming up,” Spears said.

Robertson is no stranger to sports injuries. In high school, he broke the same ankle twice.

“The first time, I didn’t even know that I broke it,” he said. “It was one of the bones on the outside, so I could walk, but running hurt.”

The second time was more of a fluke when a good day at the beach turned sour.

“I just walked into the water, and stepped into a hole,” he recalled. “[My foot] just moved the wrong way.”

The injuries took Robertson out for half of his sophomore season. Junior year, however, he played through recovery, earning First-Team All-Conference honors, and again his senior year.

When he isn’t practicing or playing, Robertson devotes much of his time to his 4-month-old Husky puppy.

“He still runs around all the time, so he keeps me busy,” Robertson said of his blue-eyed Ghost, named for a direwolf from the tv show “Game of Thrones”.

After graduation, the criminal justice major hopes to pursue a job in law enforcement.

“Maybe I’ll be a cop,” he said. “Or something federal if I can. We’ll see.”

Robertson, who hails from Thiells, NY, said he can see himself coaching a team of his own one day, likely somewhere faster-paced than the North Country.

“It’s a little isolated up here for me,” Robertson said.

Both the feeling of trying to win something and the bonds he’s formed are Robertson’s most valued takeaways from 15 years of playing sports.

“Most of my friends are people that I’ve played sports with.”

Robertson is looking ahead to this Friday and Saturday, as men’s soccer will spar off against SUNY Oswego and SUNY Cortland, both at home.

“It’s going to be a big weekend,” Robertson said.

With the team already toting a 7-0-2 record, Robertson said things are looking good.

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