Sept. 30, 2010
With last weekend’s visit to the flat lands of Manchester, N.H. in their rear-view mirror, the Champlain Valley Union High cross country runners return to their native Green Mountains (literally) on Saturday — the harriers have an invitational meet in the Thetford hills overlooking the Connecticut River.
The course for Saturday’s 20th annual Woods Trail Run will also be the site of the state meet in late October.
The trip to the Granite State was rewarding, as CVU’s well-balanced girls team captured first place in the elite division in the annual Manchester Invitational. Rival Essex High took sixth.
The triumph was CVU’s first in the nationally significant Manchester event since 2005. Little wonder head coach Scott Bliss told media outlets that it ranks as one of the program’s biggest victories.
The Redhawks once again ran in a pack, with Adrienne Devita taking 13th place in 20 minutes and 16 seconds. Summer Spillane was right on her heels in 14th place at 20:18 and Julienne Devita 15th at 20:20.
The girls ran so tightly together that a blanket could nearly cover them, but the blanket may need to be larger: Tayor Spillane, up from the junior varsity, finished 19th in 20:39. And right behind her was veteran Aleksey Jordick in 22nd place.
The lone Vermonter with a better time was Essex High’s Markie Palermo in 19:15, good for sixth.
CVU’s boys ran in the large school division and placed sixth, second among Vermont teams behind third place St. Johnsbury Academy.
The Redhawks’ Dan Hebert ran the course in 17:26 to finish 16th overall and fourth among the five Vermonters in the top 20.
— Mal Boright, Observer correspondent