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Abbi Knows No Borders

Updated: Jun 11


Abbi Knows No Borders

By: Lora Parsons

The Ashland Beacon


Photo by Jessi Jones Photography and submitted by Borders family

Abbi Borders

Abbi Borders, graduate of Boyd County High School, is the daughter of Todd and Bobbi

Borders of Catlettsburg. She has two sisters—Graci and Emma Borders—who also graduated from BCHS in 2019 and 2021, respectively. If you’re a Boyd County fan who has followed BC Lady Lions basketball, softball, or soccer during the time the Borders girls were taking a field or court, you’ve likely rooted on one of the three sisters. But, what you may not be as familiar with is the variety in which the youngest of the three has dabbled.

  All three of the Borders girls were accomplished athletes and dedicated, genuinely kind students who their peers and teachers loved being around. In a three-girl line-up, one would easily be able to tell that these three belong in the same family, but Abbi found a way during her middle and high school careers to find an identity of her own, separate from being Graci and Emma’s sisters. Abbi’s claim to fame has been variety!

  Her school years have been spent entirely in the Boyd County district, beginning at Ponderosa Elementary, continuing at Boyd County Middle School and ending at Boyd County High School. While in middle school, Abbi established herself as a softball, basketball and soccer player. She spent a great deal of time on a court or field, polishing her skills and working to be the best player she could be. She’s even reached the point that she is now the captain of the Boyd County soccerteam. But, in the midst of those years of playing soccer, basketball, and softball, she also decided to throw in a year of cheerleading. Many students are multi-sport athletes, but not many of them choose to go from the excitement of the mid field/court action to the excitement of the sideline action. There exists in our society a stereotype that girls who play sports can’t also be “girly” or “peppy” enough to cheer; they’re only tough and rugged. Abbi defies those constraints, embracing all sides of her identity--tough enough to be in on the action and graceful enough (not just physically) to also support others as they take center-stage.

Abbi’s first year in high school saw her dip into the sport of cheerleading, and she’s continued to do the same even through her senior year, adding tennis to the list of sports in which she’s participated. She and friend, Averi Mays, were looking for something fun that they could try together, decided they could be partners in tennis, and went for it!  Theylove getting to experience this new world together in a low-pressure way, enabling them to just embrace the fun of the moment. Whether in regards to adding cheerleading to her list of sports or tennis, Abbi said, “I’ve learned to be a quick learner.” 

  Cheerleading came from her love of dance, and she saw the one as an opportunity to incorporate the other. And, tennisaffords her the opportunity to spend a little extra time with a friend sharing a common interest. In a time when most multi-sport athletes are focused on skills, abilities, scholarships, and the competitive side of sports, Abbi has fully embraced sports as a way to connect with others and to fully enjoy every opportunity available to her. That doesn’t mean she hasn’t also been competitive in those arenas. Regardless of the various reasons that she’s decided to play each of these sports, one can’t look at Abbi’s high school years without acknowledging the athletic ability that she brings to the table inorder to have competitively participated in five organized team sports settings!  She’s just also figured out how to value the many layers of benefit that one gets from team sports.

The layers of Abbi run deeper, still, than her athletic ability. She shared her greatest accomplishment is, “Striving to challenge myself to pursue vigorous courses in my academic journey. My ambition has allowed me to maintain straightA’s throughout my school years, earn a nurse aide and phlebotomist certification and pass four AP exams.” She’s clearly no stranger to success in the classroom, and isn’t afraid of the hard work that this kind of success requires.  There’s nothing that Abbi does half-way. If she’s in pursuit of a goal, rest assured she’ll figure out a way to reach “excellence.” That sort of work ethic and commitment to excellence doesn’t come without a price she had to pay. She cited her greatest challenge as overcoming her own expectation of perfection. “I don’t consider unfortunate events that occur to be disappointing moments in my life. Instead, I take the opportunity to turn hardships into beneficial life lessons.” She also stresses the importance of having learned that her “perspective remains focused on how I can improve as anindividual and [on] how to translate my mistakes into opportunities for growth.” 

  It became critical for her to learn how to “set reasonable expectations for [her]self as a reminder that perfection isn’t necessary.” Her focus now is on finding the good, even if it’s just the smallest detail in order to dwell on more positive thoughts. Abbi’s positive outlook even in the face of adversity is a shift in focus that would benefit all of us. She strives for excellence in all that she does but has been able to adjust her tendency to try to reach perfection, realizing that the two are not synonymous with one another. Excellence is a natural outpouring of who she is, even though perfection is unattainable.

  In her pursuit of excellence and in keeping with the variety that Abbi has demonstrated athletically, she’s also kept things interesting in the other areas in which she’s been involved. She served as the Senior Class President, the secretary of the National Honors Society and the secretary of HOSA, making her a leader among leaders at BCHS. She was also anactive member of several other clubs: Key Club, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Pep Club, Mu Alpha Theta (a Math Honor Society) and Spanish Club. Additionally, she served on the school’s yearbook committee this school year, and sheserved as an Honor Guard representative at last year’s graduation (a distinction reserved for the top performing students of the Junior class). Because of her dedicated involvement to ALL things BCHS, it was no surprise that Abbi was chosen to represent the Senior class as a Distinguished Leader. In her time in Boyd County Schools, she has been a distinguished example of how to embrace variety as a student, capitalizing on the many opportunities available for service, leadership, academics, and athletics.

  Most of us strive to live up to the name that we’re born into. We want to make our families proud and carry on the legacy of good that our family has established. Abbi has certainly lived up to the name that her grandparents, parents, sisters, and extended family has made for themselves in our area--a family that’s known for honest business, helping their fellow man, and generally seeking out ways to make the world a better place. Abbi has lived up to that family expectation and will no doubt continue to do so in her future role as a diagnostic medical sonographer. But, Abbi has also proven overand over again that the path she walks will be her own. Fearlessly tackling new opportunities has been and will continue to be her own little unique piece of that legacy. Nothing is off limits for her…this Borders knows no borders, and simply walks her own path in excellence.


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