The Cornell equestrian team opened the 2000-01 campaign in grand fashion this weekend, taking second in the Morrisville show.
The Red earned the title of Reserve Champion by netting 41 points, just a scant three points behind Skidmore, last year’s regional titleist.
“Obviously it is very exciting for us,” senior co-captain Brooke Hafets said of the team’s performance.
Hafets was a key to the squad’s success as she took third in the Open Division. Sophomore Kate Cornell won the division in her first Intercollegiate Horse Show Association competition. Juniors Zoe Orecki and Julie Canter took second and fifth, respectively.
Cornell also won the Intermediate Fence competition, thanks to senior Kristen Connor, junior Stacey Oxley and freshman Jeanette Pettit each winning a division.
“That was really impressive. There were three classes and we won every single one,” Hafets said.
But the surprise of the meet may have been sophomores Bonnie Arzuaga and Patty Kahwaty, both of whom started riding within the past year. In the Walk-Trot Division Arzuaga took second and Kahwaty claimed fifth.
“The new people performed really well,” senior co-captain Laura Rubinate said.
Indeed, Kahwaty rode for the first time just six weeks ago, so her showing was very encouraging for the Red and its head coach Chris Mitchell.
“That says something about Chris’s coaching ability,” Hafets said.
Most importantly for the Red is the chance to improve upon the performance in the weeks to come.
“Hopefully [this weekend’s show] will set the tone for the rest of the year,” Rubinate said.
Archived article by J.V. Anderton