Liberal assistant track coach Tasha Gallegos tells a group of Redskins that she expects to see them cheering in the corner for the runners of the last few events. She knew what she was talking about as the final 100 meters of the final race of the day made the difference, and Redskins were in the corner cheering Tasha’s younger brother Isaac to victory in the 4x400 meter relay.
Daily Leader photo/Earl Watt
By EARL WATT
• Daily Leader
Tasha’s return could not have been better.
The former Lady Redskin was part of four state championship teams before she headed to Wichita State to run track for the Shockers.
Now Gallegos is back to assist Liberal, and the dramatic finish where her brother Isaac anchored the 4x400 meter relay in a come-from-behind win that won the meet for the Redskins was as dramatic an initiation into coaching that Gallegos could have received.
“I was so excited, not just for him but the entire team,” she said. Gallegos was no stranger to the pressure of winning the final event to win a meet. She had been in that position before as a Lady Redskin, and like her brother, she delivered a victory.
But her perspective has changed from athlete to coach, and it has had a different effect on Gallegos.
“I’m more nervous as a coach,” she said. “You hope your workouts are right and that you have them mentally motivated. I’ve been nervous since 2:30.”
Gallegos was part of a string of championships experienced by Liberal track. The boys won the state meet form 1991 to 2004, and the Lady Redskins won 10 of 11 meets during that same time period.
“We have a good coaching staff here,” she said. “We want to keep getting better and qualify as many as we can for the state tournament. We want to start a new tradition.”