SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Two members of Union Catholic's Class of 2019 gathered with family, friends, coaches and school administrators to sign their National Letters of Intent during a special ceremony in the gymnasium on Friday morning.
Swim star Kate Fuhrmann signed her NLI with the University of Pittsburgh, and Alexandra Borik signed to compete in track and field at Lafayette College.
"This is very special, especially knowing that I have such a big support system here at the school,'' Fuhrmann said of the festivities. "To have all my friends and family here to celebrate this accomplishment makes this whole day even more special. And it's also kind of bittersweet because it's a new chapter and I will have to leave all my friends, but it's also a very exciting time.''
"I'm so happy that this happening and I'm so grateful to everyone who got me here, and I'm really proud to be pursuing this sport for the next four years,'' said Borik, who started running track as a sophomore. "My whole idea of running since sophomore year has changed so much, and I'm so excited to continue my track career at Lafayette. "Today is pure excitement, and I'm so grateful to Union Catholic for how it celebrates everyone and their own pursuits.''
Fuhrmann, who lives in Berkeley Heights, will do down as one of the greatest swimmers in Union Catholic history.
As a junior last year, Fuhrmann put the finishing touches on a sensational season by placing seventh in the 100-yard breaststroke in 1:05.43 at the NJSIAA Meet of Champions at the Gloucester County Institute of Technology this past March in Deptford Township.
Fuhrmann, who earned a letter on the track and field team as a freshman, also sparkled at the Union County Swimming Championships last January at the Sonny Werblin Recreation Center at Rutgers University when she smashed two school records and finished first in the 50 freestyle to give her two individual county titles and three school records in her remarkable career.
In the 50 free at the county meet, Fuhrmann touched the wall just ahead of Emily Wilson of Cranford to win in 24.07, which broke the Union Catholic school record of 24.17 set 30 years ago by Lisa Besson. Fuhrmann also placed second in the 100 breaststroke in 1:04.97 to shatter the school record of 1:08.00 that was set by Gina Bratti in 2015.
As a sophomore in 2017, Fuhrmann won the 100 freestyle at the 2017 Union County Championships, and then she broke a 29-year-old Union Catholic record in the 100 free in the preliminary round at the Meet of Champions when she recorded a 53.40 to break the record of 53.88 set in 1988 by Theresa Ciniglio.
With her school records in the 50 free, 100 free, and 100 breaststroke, Fuhrmann is the only Union Catholic swimmer (boy or girl) to currently own three individual school records.
Borik, also a standout on the UC soccer team since her freshman year, had a breakout season on the track last spring to help lead the Vikings to another record breaking season. Specializing in the distance races, she ran personal best times in all her events, and was a huge key to UC's success in the distance medley relay, which was one of the best in the country.
At the Union County Relays in Westfield, Borik led off the DMR with a 1,200-meter split of 3:47.9 to help the Vikings break the meet record on the way to its fourth straight team title. At the Union County Track and Field Championships, Borik ran a personal best of 5:13.27 to place fourth in the 1,600 to lead UC to its fourth straight championship. Then at the Non-Public A State Championships, Borik placed seventh in the 1,600 and ran a personal best 2:19 on the runner-up 4x800 relay to help spark the Vikings to its fourth straight state title.
Borik, who lives in Scotch Plains, also ran on the 4x800 when UC placed 10th at the Meet of Champions and ran a personal best 3:47.91 on the 1,200 leg when the Vikings placed ninth at the New Balance Nationals in North Carolina in a school record 12:09.53, the second fastest time in N.J. for the season and the 28th fastest time in the U.S.