Cross Country Preview: Galvin hopes injuries are behind him and victories ahead
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan – Lessons learned.
That could very easily pass as the motto for Daniel Galvin, the Yokota senior who enters the 2015 cross-country season aiming for goals that have eluded him after he missed most of last year with leg injuries.
“I’ve been sore here and there, but whenever I am, I take time off,” said Galvin, sidelined by a stress fracture in his shin last fall during cross country and hampered by a pulled hamstring during track last spring.
“I’m more cautious this year,” he added. “When I feel it, I ease off. Last year, if I felt it, I would have tried to run through it.”
The result was that he missed the postseason last season. Now that he’s healthy, he hopes to take the final step toward league championships as well as a Far East cross-country title. He came in second in 2013, his sophomore season, and 13th the year before.
Galvin spent part of the summer running in USA Track national junior events, clocking 4 minutes in the 1,500 meters, which translates to 4:17 in his signature event, the 1,600. He holds the Pacific record in the 1,600 at 4:23.42, and feels he can go faster on the track and cross-country courses.
“I was running as fast as I ever ran this summer,” he said, adding that his goals are to 1) win Far East, 2) break the Tama Hills Recreation Center course record, and 3) break the Pacific 3,200-meter record in track.
“I’m pretty confident,” he said of accomplishing all three goals.
He acknowledges there will be plenty of competition, mainly from senior Evan Yukevich and American School In Japan’s strong contingent, “but if I keep my training up and I can stay healthy, I can win.”
His personal best on the Tama Hills 2.9-mile course is 14:40.9, and Galvin says he has even higher expectations entering the season. “I could have broken the Tama record last year if I hadn’t gotten hurt,” he said, adding that he thinks he can go as fast as 14:15.
Galvin feels a Far East meet title is within his sights, and Yokota could make a run at the boys Division II team title. Yukevich, Tatiana Riordan and ASIJ, he believes, is an odds-on favorite to repeat its Division I overall school banner, and their boys are his favorite competition.
“ASIJ’s going to be good this year,” he said. “I love my team, but I wish I could go work out with them.”
For his part, Yukevich is happy to know that Galvin is back and healthy. “I’ve run against him since the sixth grade,” Yukevich said. “I’m excited and I hope he’s excited, too.”
ASIJ lost just one boys runner from its Far East team last year, champion Willem Thorbecke. The girls should also be strong, what with 2014 Far East champion Brittani Shappell of running in Israel and most of her Seisen teammates having graduated. Tatiana Riordan, Lisa Watanuki and Emma Wingfield-Hayes pace the ASIJ girls contingent.
“Their top four girls are even stronger than last year,” Yukevich said. “We’re healthy and we always have people who step up. We’ll be strong.”