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Mayor Bettencourt to honor Peabody High Girls' Cross-Country state champs Thursday night

Posted by Ryan Mooney  December 11, 2012 10:10 AM

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Mayor Ted Bettencourt will honor the Peabody High Girls' Cross-Country team that took first place at the 2012 All-State meet in November.

The team topped second-place finisher Lincoln-Sudbury and third place Needham at Northfield Mountain to take first place in Division 1 for the first time since 1978.

Catarina Rocha, a senior and the team's indisputable superstar, went undefeated for the season, including her second straight All-State title, before winning the Foot Locker Northeast Regional in New York and finishing second in the Foot Locker Cross-Country Nationals in San Diego on December 8.

The Boston Globe named Rocha one of two girls' cross-country Athletes of the Year, and senior Heather MacLean an all-scholastic. Sam Allen, Luaren Barrett, Mary Leach, Sydney May, and Antonia Paguica took all-star honors, and coach Joe Rocha was named one of two Coaches of the Year.

Bettencourt will present each team member and coach a special mayoral citation of achievement during the ceremony at City Hall's Wiggin Auditorium at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, and will also unveil a set of distinctive road signs acknowledging the team's triumph.

"The girls cross-country team performed at an exceptional level all season long, culminating in a state championship," Bettencourt said in a statement. "I look forward to recognizing each of them for their outstanding performance, teamwork, and commitment to excellence."

Ryan Mooney can be reached at globe.mooney@yahoo.com. Follow him on Twitter @mooney_ryan.

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