Alumni Athlete Category
Class of 1970, Football
Eric Torkelson was a running back, defensive back and team captain for the BH-BL Spartans, winning All-State honors in his senior year. He attended the University of Connecticut, where he was New England Player of the year in 1973 and named to the All-Yankee Conference team as a running back.
Eric was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in 1974 and played there for eight seasons as a running back and special teams player. In his NFL career, he rushed for 1,307 yards, caught 59 passes for 469 yards, and scored eight touchdowns. His best season was 1979 when he ran for 401 yards and three touchdowns.
Eric has been married to his wife Emily for 24 years, and has three daughters, Amy, Michelle and Anne, as well as two grandchildren, Elijah and Nova. He has worked for Styker Corporation, a medical supply company, for the past 23 years, and currently lives in Oneida, Wisconsin.
Class of 1972 Field Hockey, Volleyball, Basketball & Tennis
Teresa Maguire was a four sport athlete for BH-BL. In field hockey, Terrie joined the team as a freshman. She led her team to an 8-0-1 record as a sophomore, 9-0-2 as a junior, and an undefeated 10-0 as a senior. The field hockey team led the Section 2 tournament during her senior year under the coaching of her inspiration, Dawn Dickenson O’Neil, and Terrie was honored as a member of the Mohawk Field Hockey Association All-Star First Team. Terrie also played four years of varsity volleyball and basketball. In tennis, Terrie played for three years on the varsity team, and was undefeated each year.
Among her many honors were winning the Top Physical Education Fitness Award in 11th and 12th grade, as well as being named the 1972 All-Around Athlete for the yearbook. Terrie also received the Lisa Lang Award, Leader’s Club Award, BH-BL Meritorious Award for three years, and the BH-BL Teacher’s Association Scholarship.
Terrie graduated Summa Cum Laude from Ithaca College in 1976, and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education/Athletics. She was the valedictorian of her class, and competed in four sports. She helped lead her team to two New York State Championships in field hockey, and competed in swimming for three years, basketball for one year, and tennis for one year.
Terrie earned a Master’s Degree in Health Education from Russell Sage College, and a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from The College of Saint Rose. She has worked for the North Colonie School District since 1976 as an elementary physical education teacher. For 30 years, she has coached three to four sports a year, including field hockey, volleyball, basketball, tennis and softball. Terrie resides in Niskayuna, NY.
Class of 1976, Soccer and Tennis
Neale Moore was on the varsity soccer and tennis teams for three years. As a junior and senior, Neale was the Suburban Council scoring leader with 54 career goals, and was also named to the All Suburban Council First Team for both years. He holds a BH-BL school record for the most goals in a single game with six goals. In tennis, Neale was the League Tournament Champion in 1976, and was also a Sectional Semifinalist.
Neale attended SUNY Cortland where he played soccer for four years. He was a four time All SUNY College player, and was honored as an NCAA College All American in 1979. He was drafted to the Pennsylvania Stoners American Soccer League. Neale is married to his wife and they have two daughters, Kelsey and Mackenzie.
Class of 1983, Track & Field
Miles Irish has tireless energy, a positive attitude and passion that have carried him farther than he ever anticipated.
Once the legendary Spartan’s track coach, Richard Stevens spotted his natural talent; he would do nothing but run. His training work ethic was unrivaled and paid off in spades. He ran cross country for three seasons, and indoor and outdoor track for four seasons each. During this time, he won 18 Suburban Council Championships, 12 individually and 6 on relay teams, before schools were divided by divisions. He was a two-time New York State Champion in the 1000 meter. Miles 1000 National meter record is still the Section 2 and New York State Record 27 years later, and he is still number four all-time at the event in the United States. He held Section 2 records in six events, including the outdoor 1500 meters, 1600 meters and the 3200-meter runs. He was the school record holder in 13 events, and still holds four of them in outdoor track. Miles was the only male athlete to ever hold five NY State track & field records at the same time, three of these are still standing. While at BH-BL, he earned 11 varsity letters, was captain of two of his teams, and was a two event National Record Holder.
Afforded by a very impressive high school running career, Miles was courted by several top universities. Upon choosing Georgetown University, he took full advantage of his educational and running opportunities. He was able to double major in Psychology and Finance while traveling all over the country competing. He was a four-time Big East Champion, three-time IC4A Champion, and a 3-time NCCA All American. In 1987 he anchored the Hoya’s 4x800m Indoor American Record setting relay team and was a member of the Georgetown Distance Medley Relay who won the Penn Relays in World Record time. In 2007, Miles was inducted into the Penn Relay Hall of Fame.
After graduating in 1987, he ran professionally before an injury found him settling in Southern California. Never discouraged, Miles took to road biking to fuel the need for competition. He channeled his energy and passion to start a career as a Financial Advisor. He has been working at Merrill Lynch for the last 19 years where he is Senior First Vice President in Manhattan Beach, CA.
The same traits that made him a successful runner are making him a wonderful father, husband and provider to his lovely family in Palos Verdes Estates, California. His wife of 17 years, Paula, and children, Miles III, Morgan and Ian share his passion for competition and exercise. The family enjoys traveling, and working out together.
Miles currently coaches his children’s middle school cross country team where he has over 60 athletes on his team which has a record of 18-0. He also helps out with his son’s high school cross country team who is currently ranked #2 in the country in the pre-season polls. He inspires the young athletes and this is one of his greatest accomplishments.
Class of 1983, Wrestling
Jon Cardi (Class of 1983, Wrestling) grew up in Charlton, and learned at a young age that hard work and determination delivered results. His wrestling career began as a fifth grader in Pashley Elementary, when his father, Art, began taking him and a few of his boyhood friends to local wrestling club practices and tournaments.
Though Jon loved football, he excelled in wrestling and joined the varsity line-up as an 8th grader. Over his five years representing BH-BL, under the tutelage of Coach Tim Koch, he amassed a record of 144 wins and only six losses, going undefeated from his sophomore through senior years. A five-time Section 2 finalist, Jon won the New York State Tournament three times, and in his junior year was voted “Champion of Champions” by the New York State sports writers and coaches. He is also a two-time DeMeo Award winner, honoring Section 2’s best wrestler. In 1982, Jon also won the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce Scholastic Male Athlete of the Year Award.
His career continued as a scholarship athlete at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he was successful both on and off the mat, winning the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship and being named an ACC Academic All-American. While at Carolina, Jon represented the United States at the Junior World Greco Roman Championships in Sweden and won the 74 Kg class. With many years and countless hours invested in the sport, the apex of his wrestling career was in the 1988 Olympic Trials, where he knocked off the reigning National Champion on his way to an alternate position on the Olympic Team. Jon returned to North Carolina to graduate college, with a double major in Economics and Industrial Relations.
After returning to the area in 1989, Jon went on to coach some very successful BH-BL wrestling teams with his mentor, Tim Koch. Within a few years he took a position with Mobil Oil which took him out of the area, but created the opportunity to apply a lifetime of experiences in this new competitive business arena.
Jon is the Vice President of National Sales for Safelite Autoglass where he leads a team of National Account Managers which focus on key strategic clients. He is currently raising his family of four girls just outside Columbus, Ohio, with his lovely wife of 15 years, Michele. He is actively engaged with his children’s activities, community and church, coaching his daughter’s youth soccer teams and volunteering as a committee member of the Mid-Ohio Foodbank.
Vicki Cox Goguen
Class of 1985, Soccer
Vickie Cox Goguen (Class of 1985, Soccer) began her varsity soccer career in 1982 as a tenth grade midfielder for the 13-2-1 Spartans. In 1983, Vickie scored 8 goals and had five assists. As a senior, Vickie played center midfielder and led her team to an 11-5-2 record, scoring 8 goals and 6 assists.
Vickie was a Suburban Council All-Star, the Section 2 Player of the Year. She was also named to the All-State first team. She represented the Adirondack Region at the Empire State Games for several years and played on the NY State team in 1985. She was honored as the first Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Women’s Soccer Team All-American in history.
Vickie played on scholarship for the Keene State College, were she was recognized as an Academic All-American. She was nominated as the Most Outstanding Physical Education major in New Hampshire. She was the New Hampshire representative for the National Physical Education Recreation and Dance Committee. Vickie taught Physical Education for seven years before starting a family. She has coached many levels of sports, from youth through high school
Vickie continues to excel in athletics as an accomplished long distance runner. She has completed five marathons, finishing 3rd in San Antonio and 243rd in New York City. She has also completed the Boston, San Diego and Vancouver marathons. Her most impressive running achievement was the 2007 UltraCentric Ultra-Marathon where she finished 1st among females and 2nd overall, running 62 miles in 12 hours.
She and her husband, Marc, will celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary in July. They live in Trophy Club, Texas, with their two sons, Matthew and Joshua, and daughter, Kylie.
Class of 1985, Wrestling
Jason Morris joined the BH-BL varsity wrestling team as a sophomore, and compiled an overall high school record of 98 wins and 4 losses. He was a three-time Class “A” Champion, and won the Section 2 Championships as a junior and senior. He was the New York State Champion in 1984 and 1985.
Jason went to Syracuse University where he was the EIWA “Freshman of the Year” and the 1986 champion. He was an EIWA Silver Medalist, and a two time NCAA Division I National Qualifier. In 1989, he was an NCAA Division I All American.
Jason has achieved international success for judo, winning 60 career International medals and as a competitor in four Olympic Games in 1988 (Korea), 1992 (Spain), 1996 (USA) and 2000 (Australia). He was the silver medalist in the 1992 Olympic Games held in Barcelona, Spain. Jason has won multiple medals at the World Championships for Judo: the bronze medal in1993 in Hamilton, Canda, fifth place in 1987 in Essen, Germany, fifth place in 1989 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, and seventh in 1991 in Barcelona, Spain.
He has also won multiple gold medals in the US Open, New York Open, Guido Sieni, and Quebec Open Championships. He also won gold medals in the Pan Am Games, Czech Open, Ontario Open, Austrian Open, Mexico International, and was the only winner ever from North or South America at the Tbilisi International Tournament. Jason is a six-time National Champion from 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, and 1999. He is also an eight-time National Junior Champion and the Olympic Sports Festival Champion.
As the head instructor of the Jason Morris Judo Center, Jason has coached athletes to many national and international titles. He was the head coach for the 2008 Olympics in China, and was the 2007 USOC “Development Coach of the Year” and the 2006 “Coach of the Year.” He is the owner and operator of Real Judo Magazine, and has been named “Coach of the Year” for the publication in 2003, 2005 and 2006.
Jason lives in Glenville with his wife, Teri, and their twins Randi Emiko and Danica Jaden.
William (BJ) Jourdanais Jr.
Class of 1991, Baseball & Basketball
William (BJ) Jourdanais Jr. was the first person to ever play Varsity Baseball as a ninth grader for BH-BL. He started all four years under coach Pete Barden, and played mostly pitcher and shortstop. His fastest pitch was 91 miles per hour, and he had a batting average of .330 for his four seasons on the team. BJ made the all area team for three of his four years, and was the Section 2 Player of the Year in 1991.
BJ joined the Varsity Basketball Team as a ninth grader when he was moved up to the team for Sectionals. He played guard, forward and center, depending on the opposing team’s roster. He was on the all area team for three years, and also played for the Adirondack Empire State Game team. For his senior year, BJ led his team to a first-ever Section 2 Championship title from BH-BL. He was named the Section 2 Player of the Year, was the MVP for the Section 2 Tournament, and also won the Section 2 Slam Dunk competition. He was also named on of the Top 50 players in New York State. BJ was the all-time leading scorer in BH-BL Men’s Basketball, and is still top five in school history for scoring, rebounds, assists and steals.
BJ graduated from Seton Hall University with a degree in Business Administration. He had a full scholarship for baseball, and played as a freshman as a pitcher. His top speed was 94 miles per hour, and he also played shortstop and outfield. BJ is married to Tatha Jourdanais and has a daughter, Taylor.
Class of 1992, Soccer
Janet Urban Black (Class of 1992, Soccer) joined the Varsity Soccer team as a freshman, where she made an immediate impact on the team. That season, she was second on the team in goals, scoring seven goals and 10 assists. The team was a Section 2 finalist, with a record of 17-2-1, and Janet was named a Suburban Council All-Star, her first of four times earning this honor. As a sophomore, Janet was second on the team in goals, with 7 goals and 2 assists. The final record for the team was 15-3.
Janet was the leading scorer on the team as a junior with 16 goals and 4 assists. She led the team to the New York State Class B finals, winning the Regional and Section 2 Class B Championships. Janet was named an All-American that season, and she was also on the First Team for New York State and was the Section 2 Player of the Year. Her team had a 19-3-2 record.
As a senior, Janet led her team to a 15-3-1 season and the team was a Section 2 Class A finalist. Janet scored 20 goals and had 12 assists, and was again named an All-American. She was also named to the All-State First Team, and was the Section 2 Player of the year. Janet ranks number 6 on the all-time Career Point Leader list for BH-BL Women’s Soccer, and is 6ths in Career goals and assists.
Janet graduated from SUNY Cortland with a BS in Health Science, and from Elmira College with an MS in Education. She played soccer all four years on scholarship, and her team won a National Championship during her freshman year. Janet was the SUNYAC Player of the Year and was named a 1st Team All-American during her senior year.
After graduation, Janet became the assistant soccer coach at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. She then went into fitness training and management, and is currently a special education teacher and coach at Nolan Ryan Junior High School. She is a member of the Atomic Crossfit and competes in the Reebok Crossfit Games. Janet lives in Richmond, Texas with her husband and daughter.
Murry O’Neil graduated from South Glens Falls High School in 1947, where he was a four-letter achiever. He graduated from Springfield College with a BS and MS in 1951. At Springfield, Murry played both baseball and football. After graduation, Murry was in the Marine Corps.
Murry taught physical education and coached basketball and football at South Glens Falls Central Schools from 1951 to 1954. In basketball, his teams won the Saratoga League in 1951-52 with a record of 16-2, and they were the Saratoga League Basketball County Champions in 1952-53 with a 14-4 record.
After teaching at South Glens Falls, Murry joined the BH-BL Schools in 1954 and started the athletic programs for football, wrestling and track in 1955. He coached Varsity Football for 30 years and retired in 1985. His record for football was 138-103-4, and his teams were Suburban Council Champions in 1968 and 1969, and gold Division Champions in 1982, 1983, 1984 and 1985.
Murry coached wrestling for 15 years and had an overall record of 53-13-3. He coached the Wrestling Champions in the Western B Division in 1961-62 and 1962-63, and the team was the Sectional Champion in 1963. He coached Varsity Track for 15 years from 1955 to 1970, and his overall record was 119-29-2.
After retiring from BH-BL, he coached football at the following schools: Ballston Spa, Saratoga, Queensbury, South Glens Falls and Spa Catholic, and he retired for Spa Catholic in 2010.
He was president of the CDWOA in 1972-73, and the Clearing House Chairman for Wrestling in Section 11 from 1980-94. Some of his many awards include the Capital District Hall of Fame Amateur Award, First Bulldog Pride Hall of Fame from South Glens Falls, and the BH-BL Hall of Excellence Award from the Wrestling Booster Club.
Coach for Girls Soccer, Boys Swimming and Boys Tennis
Kevin Fitzpatrick has coached at BH-BL for 35 years, and coached three of this year’s recipients. In Varsity Swimming, his teams had over 300 wins in his 35 years of coaching, which is the most in Section 2 history. His swimmers won state championship titles in the 400 freestyle relay and the 500 freestyle. At one time, the swimmers he coached held three sectional records.
Kevin coached Girls Varsity Soccer for 24 years, and his teams achieved a 321-125-33 record, which is over 70% of the games won. His team won the New York State Championship in 2003, and he won the NYS Soccer Coach of the Year that season. Four teams made the State Final Four, and 3 teams were in the State Finals. He was the Section 2 Coach of the Year three times, and his teams were in the sectional finals 16 times, and 5 teams won the Section 2 Championship game.
Kevin was the Section 2 Tennis Chairman for over ten years where he helped to create the system for state competition and seeding. He had sectional champions in doubles and numerous state qualifiers.
In addition, Kevin was the Community Swim Director for over 30 years, and was a volunteer soccer coach for over 20 years. He was the volunteer assistant Boys Varsity Soccer Coach for three years. Kevin continues to officiate soccer at the high school level, and both college and high school swimming. Kevin lives in Glenville and he has two sons that graduated from BH-BL, Shawn and David.
Harold Van Earden
Harold VanEarden was born in Clymer, New York. He graduated from SUNY Cortland and SUNY Brockport, and was dedicated to the promotion of physical education and the value of interscholastic athletics.
Upon graduation, he served in the U.S. Army for two years, and then began his career of teaching and coaching, eventually becoming the Director of Athletics at BH-BL, retiring in 1996. During his 26 years of service, BH-BL teams won more than 70 Section II titles and experienced great growth in facilities and sports participation. Harold would always attribute this success to having and hiring good people, great student-athletes, and a strong and supportive community.
Harold will be remembered for impacting the lives of many people that he connected with, from the youth he was involved with, to the many educators and coaches he worked with, to his Section II friends, and to his friends both on and off the golf course. Harold is survived by his wife of 52 years, Frances, five children, and 8 grandchildren.
1987 Field Hockey – 1st BH-BL State Champion
The 1987 Field Hockey Team was the first team in the history of BH-BL Athletics, and the first time in the history of Section 2 Class A athletics, for a team to be named New York State Champion. Coach Dawn O’Neil’s field hockey team topped off their 13-0-1 season by defeating the defending state champions, Centereach, in a 3-0 shut-out. Despite the dropping temperatures, negative wind-chill and snow, they played what Dawn O’Neil described as a “perfect game.”
Team Players: Amy Crowshaw, Beth Crowshaw, Liona DeLuke, Sue Eckert, Sue Kopchick, Doreen Nelson, Jill Nunes, Vikki Parker, Anne Flynn, Kate Flynn, Ellen Harris, Laura Hayes, Debbie Puckette, Lisa Richardson, Erin Smith, Katie Sommers, Maureen Jeram, Jill Jordan, Kathy Keating, Kris Koehne, Kelly Vrooman, Betsy Walters, Beth Welch
Robert Speck started his service to the school district in the 1960s as an elementary school father who was active in the Stevens School PTA, eventually becoming the Stevens PTA president. Eventually all four of Bob’s children became BH-BL graduates, and three of his 10 grandchildren current attend district schools.
In 1973 the Stevens PTA honored Bob with a Founder’s Day Award in recognition of his exemplary service to the school. This is the highest award given by the BH-BL PTAs. In 1974, Bob was elected by district residents to his first three-year term of office on the BH-BL Board of Education, started his 36 years in this position until his formal board service ended on June 30, 2010. Part of the BH-BL Board of Education’s long-standing democratic culture is that the board presidency rotates each year. During his tenure, Bob served as school board president for six one-year terms, specifically during the 1977-78, 1987-88, 1993-94, 1998-99, 2004-05, and 2008-09 school years.
During these years he continued attending PTA meetings, volunteering to serve on district study committees, attending training workshops, researching all the various issues before the school board, and attending athletic functions for his children and grandchildren. Bob is a fan of all of the BH-BL sports and still regularly attends soccer games.
He served on the Capital Region BOCES Board of Directors for over six years, serving school districts throughout Albany, Schenectady and Schoharie Counties and becoming president of that board for two years. From 1990 – 2001, Bob was also the elected Area 7 Director on the board of the NY State School Boards Association (NYSSBA), meaning that he represented the interests of 75 area school districts on this statewide group for 10 years. This required Bob to attend many state functions in both Albany and Washington, DC.
Bob has long been known as the school district’s archivist with an amazing collection of binders full of materials documenting every aspect of BH-BL school history. He authored a booklet about state educational history for NYSSBA, and has been the go-to person for any question about past committees, activities and initiatives within the school district. He continues in his role as district historian to this day.
When Bob celebrated his 25th year on the school board in 1998, the BH-BL Rotary named him their “Citizen of the Year” for his contributions to the local community and to education. At that time Bob was only the third person so honored by the BH-BL Rotary.
At the groundbreaking for the new Middle School library media center on April 27, 2005, Bob’s fellow board members surprised him by announcing their decision to name the new structure the “Robert S. Speck Library Media Center.” Part of the surprise was that all four of Bob’s children and his 10 grandchildren were on hand to help with the groundbreaking ceremony. BH-BL residents were also proud to honor Bob as Grand Marshal of the 9th annual Community Flag Day Parade down Route 50 on June 10, 2010.
Although there is no group that tracks school board members’ service records for the 700-plus school districts in the state, BH-BL believes Speck was one of the longest serving school board members in New York history.