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Mayor Recognizes Girls' Cross Country Champs

A pair of official road signs declare Peabody home of the PVMHS Girls Cross Country All State Champions. Team members also received special individual citations from the mayor as well.

The Peabody High girls' cross country team now has its own pair of road signs in the Tanner City.

Mayor Ted Bettencourt invited the team down to City Hall last week to formally congratulate the young ladies on their recent Division I state championship and unveil the new road signs, which are becoming a tradition now for state champions in Peabody under Bettencourt's tenure.

Bettencourt told the team he's proud to recognize the positive milestones -- the great things -- the city's youth are reaching when oftentimes much of the public focus tends to be on the negative.

He added that a central focus for his time in office is precisely in promoting the good things coming out of Peabody.

"We have a lot of talent in this city and...more and more I see it every day," he said.

"It's been a roller coaster month," said coach Joe Rocha, smiling.

First, it was the state crown for the team and the individual title for his daughter Catarina four weeks ago and then she claimed the Northeast Regional title in the Foot Locker series before placing second at nationals in San Diego earlier this month.

Rocha said the girls are proud to be Tanners and represent Peabody well inside and outside the classroom.

Before revealing the new signs and awarding special citations to each member of the team, Bettencourt went on to note how Peabody especially has a history of athletic talent and the last time the team won a state title was in 1978, so it was long overdue.

A Peabody High Hall of Famer himself, he also talked about valuable life lessons gained from team sports.

Bettencourt said the two metal signs, which read "City of Peabody, Home of PVMHS Girls Cross Country All State Champions," will be placed at the high school and near the square downtown. 

"I already put one up for Catarina, now I have to put up a couple more because she's second in the nation," Bettencourt quipped, smiling.

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