BURNT HILLS: Board honors runners

Runners on the state champion girls cross country team received more accolades at Tuesday's meeting of the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake board of education.

Team members Martha Brown, Rachael Cyrus, Alyssa Drapeau, Meaghan Gregory, Carolyn Herkenham, Molly Pezzulo, and Sam Roecker won the Class A cross country championship in Warwick Valley, Orange County, in November.

The team was the school's largest ever, with 27 members, and set the highest varsity and freshman Suburban Council records of 9-2. Team members excelled academically as well, turning in a scholar-athlete team grade point average of 96 percent.

The team displayed unwavering determination, hard work, desire and heart in pursuit of their goals, said board president Elizabeth Herkenham. Coach Shaun Zepf also praised the team for its dedication to the sport.

"These girls deserve all the credit," said Zepf.

Herkenham urged meeting attendees to view a display of the many trophies that Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake athletic teams won this past fall, including girls and boys volleyball, soccer, football, field hockey and golf.

The cross country team received an official proclamation from the board as well as individual certificates.

In other business Tuesday night, the board heard from one member of the district who asked them to consider upgrades to sports fields as they plan how to spend available state aid for the upcoming budget.

"We need to fix our fields; there are no dugouts, no bleachers, no scoreboards, and at Stevens Elementary School, the fields are dangerous with hard soil and rocks," said Charles Brown.

Herkenham said discussions about the budget and aid allocations are just beginning now, and some state aid requirements prohibit use for improvements to district fields.

"The board is having discussions about improving the sports fields," said Superintendent Jim Schultz. "We'll be charging a committee to review this next year.""

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