Engineering Success On the Court Robinson-Griggs Builds a Legacy as MIT Coach

Lucia Robinson-Griggs, who graduated from Pope John XXIII High School as one of its greatest athletes of all time, is enjoying much success in the coaching ranks.

Lucia Robinson-Griggs, MIT women’s basketball associate head coach, proudly holds the team’s NEWMAC championship trophy at the conference tournament in Springfield in the company of her proud family, from left, cousin Maureen Lee, cousin, Nickolette
Mauch, father, Leo Robinson, uncle, D. Bruce Mauch, aunt, Gail Mauch, and aunt, Arlene Robinson.

Robinson-Griggs just completed a tremendous season as the associate head coach of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) women’s basketball team. The Lady Engineers captured the NEWMAC Conference Championship for the second year in row.

MIT played St. Joseph’s of Maine in the first round of the NCAA Division 3 Tournament and lost 68-61.

Lucia’s father, Councillor-at-Large Leo Robinson, mother, REACH Executive Director Linda Alioto-Robinson, uncle, Chelsea Clock Company Vice President D. Bruce Mauch, and aunts Gail Mauch and Arlene Robinson traveled to Ithaca College to root on Lucia’s MIT contingent in the NCAA first round game.

Robinson-Griggs, who began her basketball career in the Chelsea Youth Basketball League before starring for the Pope John Tigers, was promoted to associate head coach at MIT this season. She recorded her 100th career win at MIT in November.

A rewarding experience at MIT

What is the experience like coaching at MIT, one of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world?

“Coaching at MIT is incredibly rewarding and inspiring,” said Robinson-Griggs. “The women on the team are able to balance their heavy course work, research and internships and are still able to be “all in” for basketball. They spend time being dedicated to watching film, working out in the weight room and doing their best on the court.”

 Robinson-Griggs said because of the student-athletes’ rigorous academic requirements, the coaching staff has to be well prepared for the daily practices and strategy sessions.

“As a coach, our players’ schedules really force you to be prepared in order to maximize your time with the team,” said Robinson-Griggs. “We only have a two-hour window for practices, so our plans for skill development and planning for opponents needs to be all encompassing and ready to go. Knowing after graduation, the players will go on to have their pick of careers makes you feel a sense of pride and awe that they also chose to play basketball as part of their collegiate experience.”

Robinson-Griggs was previously the head coach of the Lesley University women’s basketball team, leading the Lady Lynx to two conference championships.

From college player

to college coach

Robinson-Griggs played college basketball at Bentley University, a perennial Division 2 powerhouse coached by Barbara Stevens. She received her undergraduate degree from Bentley and holds a Master’s degree in Mathematics from Lesley. She is a mathematics teacher at Revere High School where she has also coached in the football program. She is a former women’s professional football player for the Mass Militia.

Robinson-Griggs has worked at several summer basketball camps, including one directed by Brown University head coach Sarah Behn, the former BC and Foxboro High School standout.

Leo Robinson, who played basketball for Chelsea High School and Burdett College, said he was proud of his daughter’s many accomplishments in the sport of basketball. He credits her dedication and mastery of the fundamentals of the game as key factors in her success as a coach.

“Lucia is a sound coach who understands the fundamentals,” said Leo. “She is a good strategist who watches a lot of game film.”

Robinson-Griggs was the keynote speaker at the city’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration in January. The 31-year-old scholar-athlete, role model and coach delivered an inspiring address that earned her a standing ovation from the audience.

Lucia and her husband, Michael, live in Chelsea and have two children, Kaia, 4, and Kellan, 2.

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