Galvan Set for Return to NCAA Championships

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Set to make her second career appearance on the national stage, senior Laura Galvan will compete in NCAA Championship this Saturday at the La Vern Gipson Cross Country Course in Terre Haute, Indiana. The final 6K race of the 2014 season will begin at 11 a.m.

Earlier this season, Galvan raced at the La Vern Gipson Cross Country Course in the Pre-National Invitational, where she finished 51st in a time of 21:34.4. Head coach Ryun Godfrey is hopeful with the training and progression she has made this season she can improve her performance on the championship course.

"It is good for her because she has been there and she knows the course," Godfrey said. "When we were there [in October], it had been raining for a week and the course was really slow since people were running out of their way to avoid the softer areas. We are hoping the course is a little bit firmer."

Ready to face her toughest competition of the season, Galvan will compete against 31 schools and 37 of the top individuals in the nation at this year's championship. Five Big 12 schools will be represented at the NCAA Championship. Iowa State, West Virginia, and Baylor earned automatic qualifying honors and enter this week ranked No. 5, No. 7, and No. 26 in the nation, respectively, while Oklahoma State will also be represented by Monika Juodeskaite, as an individual runner.

Galvan's senior campaign has been highlighted with a runner-up performance at the J.K. Gold Classic Duals, a top-five finish at the Big Ten Preview that earned her Big 12 Runner of the Week honors in September, and All-Big 12 honors after an 11th place finish at the conference championship. She looks to round out a successful K-State cross country career after finishing ninth at the Midwest Regional last weekend, securing a place on the All-Midwest Regional team for third-straight year and an NCAA berth.

"Qualifying was a bit of a relief," Godfrey said. "This has been really important, when it is your last year she wants everything to go perfectly. She was really excited to make it back, so hopefully that will take a little bit of pressure off of her going into this race."

Galvan's first NCAA Championship appearance came in 2012, where she went onto finish 45th in a time of 20:19.5, breaking the 6K record previously held by Beverly Ramos in the process.

"Everyone wants run fast and have their best race at the end," Godfrey said. "Hopefully, with the competition and with a drier course she can have a pretty good time."

Follow Galvan's final appearance for Wildcat cross country by visiting NCAA.com for a live webcast, as well as live results.