BELLOWS FALLS, Vt. – Russ Pickering’s Bellows Falls Terriers girls cross country team won the Connecticut Valley Conference Cross Country title three years in a row from 1983 through 1985. They almost won it again in 1986. Then Hanover Marauders spoiled the fun by nipping them by one measly point.
This fall, Tim Eno’s 2018 Lady Terriers captured top honors for the first time since. Once again, the score was close, meaning every ounce of effort from each Terrier scorer was immensely important. When all the running was done, BF stood the tallest with 60 points, followed oh so closely by Keene 62 and Hanover 65.
“It’s so tough to win that race,” Pickering remembers. “You might be the best around your regular competition, but then Hanover and Keene are often really good and spoil the day.”
Not so for Pickering from ’83 through ’85 and not so for Eno and his girls this time around. Eno’s squad is quite young. Does that mean they might go after another three-peat? Stay tuned, but that would be an incredibly big feat.
This year, Abby Broadley brought her freshman talents front and center stage and she finished second in the big meet covering the course in an impressive 18:43. Fellow freshman Stephanie Ager ran well throughout garnering the seventh spot in 19:46. Two more Purple and White runners graced the top 13 spots with sophomore Abby Dearborn 10th and seniors Lia Clark 13th and Jasmine Boucher 13th.
Eno said, “The excitement of the girls when they found out they won was priceless. This is a very special mix of young women with the underclassmen as important as the upperclassmen. The girls are also really excited about the Marble Valley League Meet as well as the Vermont State Meet.” The Vermont State Meet takes place Oct. 27 at Thetford at 11:30 a.m.
Pickering and Eno are two of only three coaches Bellows Falls Union High School has had in its 48 years of competition. Pickering was on board when the school opened in 1971 and was in charge up until Eno took over 20 seasons ago. Pickering did take a two-year leave of absence in the late ‘80s to study in Oregon, and former Terrier running star Matt Guild stepped in. Only Pickering and his two star pupils have ever held the reins of the program.