|Alessandro Twins Still Hold School Records at Highlands, NKU|
|Contributed Photo. Twins Brian and Kevin Alessandro, 1998 Highlands graduates, were recently inducted into the Northern Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame.|
Twin 39-year-old brothers Brian and Kevin Alessandro, 1998 Highlands graduates, were recently inducted into the Northern Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame at Villa Hills Civic Club. The two ran those sports and even played soccer during their days at Highlands before running at Northern Kentucky University. Brian Alessandro now coaches cross country and girls track at Highlands.
"I was surprised and happy about that," Brian Alessandro said. "In my opinion, you play sports to enjoy it then you never expect to be recognized outside of that years later. In my case, I'm still in it (coaching). I just think it's interesting that a sport that's usually a punishment for other sports identifies my brother and I in our athletic careers. For instance, if you miss a practice, you run a mile."
The two helped set the two-mile relay record at Highlands in 1998. The time of eight minutes, three seconds is still the second-fastest time in Class AA.They ran the two-mile relay, the one-mile relay and 800-meter run during their track and field days at Highlands.
"It's nice to know that somebody thought enough about what we've done both athletically and through coaching to do that," Kevin Alessandro said. "That's nice. I wasn't expecting it."
Kevin Alessandro lives in Louisville with his wife Jen and their kids Leo, 5, and Mia, 3. Kevin Alessandro met his wife Jen while running at NKU. Jen ran for Bellarmine University. Before working at Total Quality Logistics, Kevin Alessandro founded the cross country and track programs at Division III Spalding University in Louisville.
"Most of my friend I acquired through running or coaching," Brian Alessandro said. "Guys I coached at Highlands are also at Northern. I used to run with them. Our kids hang out. It's gratifying."
The two also have records in indoor track at NKU. Brian Alessandro owns the 600-meter record in 1:28.67. Kevin Alessandro owns the 800 record in 1:56.53.
In the last seven seasons, the Highlands girls cross country teams have won five Class AA state championships. That included four straight from 2012 to 2015. The two ran cross country meets in the morning at Highlands then played soccer games in the afternoon.
"It's completely different from when we were there," Kevin Alessandro said. "Brian and I ran while we were playing soccer so we were kind of stretched thin on what we could do being two-sport athletes in the fall. At least while we were there, the cross country teams were never a factor in state while we were there so it is good. It's nice to see a program other than just the football team all the time winning championships."