Kosgei, of Richmond, Ky., completed the course in 17 minutes and six seconds, while Justyna Mudy, of Rome, Ga., finished second (17:33) and Auburn’s Emily Ansick finished third (18:59).
“It feels great,” Kosgei said. “I was here last year and finished fourth and ran a 17:45, so today, this year, I beat that by about 40 seconds. That’s a big jump. I’m so happy about it.”
Another reason for Kosgei’s happiness was the consistency she’s gained since injuring her Achilles’ heel in February.
“After the injury in February, I haven’t been able to train much, but I’ve done some things here and there,” she said. “I’ve worked more on mileage than speed, so today I wasn’t really tired.
“I’m getting back to running from the injury. That’s why I’m so happy. I was running times that weren’t that great earlier in the season, but I was going back and forth from relaxing and racing. Now I’m starting to run more consistently.”
In Kosgei’s first 5K since the injury, she recorded a time of 16:56, which is what she said she was shooting for Saturday. She said finishing right at 10 seconds longer is “not bad.”
Kosgei, who is a graudate student at Eastern Kentucky, will return to campus later in the month. Classes start Aug. 21.
Anniston Star Sports Writer Brandon Miller can be reached at 256-235-3575 or follow him on Twitter @bmiller_star.