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A record-setting run for a Vermont runner and his dog at Rolling Hills race

Eric Morse and his dog, Murdock, won the Rolling Hills Road Race in Avon Saturday.

Eric Morse and his dog, Murdock, won the Rolling Hills Road Race in Avon Saturday.

AVON, July 11 – Every day, Eric Morse takes a run with his dog, Murdock. It’s usually about 8 miles a day but there are other days when the duo run up to 14 miles.

A little over three miles didn’t pose a problem Saturday morning. Morse, who lives in Montpelier, Vermont, won the fourth annual Rolling Hills 5K Road Race at St. Matthew’s Church.

Morse and Murdock won the race in a record performance of 19:20.6 for the course that is closer to 3.2 miles than the advertised 3.1 miles. That easily eclipsed the old mark of 21:23 set a year ago by Avon’s Jeff Molson.

Avon’s Emily Jarka won the woman’s race by nearly a minute and 30 seconds with her time of 24 minutes. She finished eighth overall in the field of 86 runners.

Most of the races that allow dogs are in the spring and fall – cooler times of the year for the dogs. Morse and Murdock, 5, won the Run and Wag Bunny Williams Connecticut Doggie Cup in Cornwall last October. The Cornwall event claims to be the Doggie Cup state championship race.

Morse found out about the Rolling Hills race online.

Proceeds from the event supported the continuing mission trips of the St. Matthew’s high school-age youth group.

Rolling Hills 5K
At Avon
Top 10 results: 1. Eric Morse, Montpelier, Vt., 19:20.6 for 3.2 miles, 2. John Minervino, 20:43.9, 3. Timothy Jarka 21:23.1, 4. Christopher Balich 21:31.9, 5. Cam Suttmeier 22:53.9, 6. Mark Flynn 23:20.0, 7. Sean Richard 23:31.5, 8. Emily Jarka 24:00.8, 9. Ron Simpson 24:05.0, 10. Steve Stickel 24:34.7
Top five women
8. Emily Jarka 24:00.8, 12. Hilda Heck 25:27.8, 13. Beth Murphy 25:32.8, 15. Emily Wright 25:55.6, 19. Lia Karpicki 26:51.5.

All race results

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years.

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