Soquel resident Hollie Estupinian is a mom and a runner. Monday, being both paid off as she crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon in 2 hours, 59 minutes, 23 seconds.

Hollie Estupinian takes a breather after finishing the 2012 Boston Marathon as the sixth fastest American woman. (Hollie Estupinian/Contributed)

Estupinian, who does most of her training pushing a double stroller, placed 23rd among women and 503 overall as the top female runner from Santa Cruz County. She was also the sixth fastest American woman.

“The cheering kind of carries you in,” Estupinian said in a phone interview from Boston on Wednesday. “…There was not one quiet spot on the whole course.”

She described the race as 26 straight miles of people cheering, and in some cases cheering her name, since she followed tradition and wrote her name on her arms.

““I will definitely do it again. I cannot wait to do it again,” Estupinian said, noting that the spirit of the marathon was inspiring.

“Even today, people are walking around Boston with their medals and jackets on.”

Estupinian has qualified for Boston numerous times, but this was her first time running it, braving temperatures that hit the 90s and that prompted event organizers to suggest many people pull out if they were not experienced runners or used to high temperatures.

“I’ve qualified every time I’ve ran a marathon, but it never seems like I’m able to do it because I’m having a baby, or it just doesn’t work out. …So I’m like, that’s it, I’m signing up,” Estupinian told the Sentinel just days after winning the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco in October.

Her 4-year-old son, Kai, and 20-month-old daughter, Mila, stayed home with family.

Estupinian wasn’t the only Santa Cruz County runner to qualify. Santa Cruz’s Brendan O’Brien was the top area male runner, finishing in 2:54 for 293rd among men and 308th place overall.

All of those who finished the race are listed below (many who signed up did not run because of heat conditions).

TOP SANTA CRUZ-AREA FINISHERS (overall place, name, city, time):

308. Brendan O’Brien, Santa Cruz, 2:54

503. Hollie Estupinian, Soquel, 2:59

1,730. Lindsay Hagen, Soquel, 3:19

4,376. Marian Crockett, Santa Cruz, 3:38

7,366. Jec Ballou, Soquel, 3:54

8,184. Leslie Haverstock, Santa Cruz, 3:57

9,537. Carl Hallie, Santa Cruz, 4:04

10,354. Kelly Puglisi, Santa Cruz, 4:08

10,945. Bob Sommer, Soquel, 4:11

12,792. Keith Barber, Aptos, 4:22

13,359. Michael Scurich, Watsonville, 4:25

14,327. Andrew Kenny, Santa Cruz, 4:30

15,717. Shea Johnson, Capitola, 4:41

19,436. Kimberly East, Santa Cruz, 5:27

19,587. Katherine Beiers, Santa Cruz, 5:32:14

21,086. Vincent Oberst, Watsonville, 6:19

— Christina Gullickson, on Twitter @CGullTweets