Kirtland’s boys’ and girls’ cross country teams opened the season with a bang at the Riverside Kickoff Classic Night Invitational on Saturday.
Several Hornets runners set new personal best times and reached new milestones in their running careers.
“We had some outstanding individual performances and some big milestones up front,” said Kirtland coach J.P. Moran. “Along with lifetime PRs, Ainsley Borthwick broke into the 20s for the first time ever and Ian Borthwick went into the 18s for the first time ever. Ainsley’s time puts her three seconds away from the all-time top 25 women in school history. Sylvia Vosicky and Izzy Copeland had lifetime personal bests and freshman Ben Sherman improved his best time by over 30 seconds.”
Ainsley Borthwick, a sophomore, finished 26th out of 242 runners to lead the girls’ team to a 12th-place finish overall.
“The night courses are my favorite,” Borthwick said. “It’s always such a thrilling experience with the course lights and finishing beneath the stadium lights. 2. Going into the race I had no expectations so coming out with a PR was very pleasing.”
Borthwick finished the race in 20:56.58 and needs to trim just three seconds from her time to add her name to Kirtland’s all-time record book as one of the top 25 runners in school history.
“Being within reach to the leader board has motivated me to push myself,” she said. “I am a little disappointed since I was so close but still satisfied.”
Vosicky and Copeland, a pair of sophomores, finished 34th and 88th respectively. Vosicky completed the 5K in 21:15 while Copeland crossed the finish line in 23:14.
Junior Stephanie Drazetic finished among the top 100 with a time of 23:28.
Junior Jessica Jackson, senior Josie Copeland, sophomore Marin Haupt, and freshman Kaitlyn D’Amato also competed for the Hornets.
Kirtland’s boys’ team finished in 18th place.
Sherman, Borthwick, and Brigham Weight each placed among the top 90 out of 232 runners.
Sherman was 47th in 18:19, Borthwick placed 69th in 18:52, and Weight was 90th in 19:27.
Senior Warren Eveland, juniors Luke Emlaw and Daniel Booth, and sophomore Jeremy Mrva also ran for the Hornets.