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HHS Press

Hopkinton High School's Student News Site

HHS Press

Hopkinton High School's Student News Site

HHS Press

Ethan Davan: Anchoring The Relay and The Team

Although running is in his blood, junior Ethan Davan has carved his own lane on the Hillers track team.
Steph Johnson
Junior Ethan Davan has been on the school’s track and field team for three years and continues to put his best foot forward.

It’s been four years since Ethan Davan first stepped onto the track, and he hasn’t looked back since.

He joined the team as a freshman, following in his siblings’ footsteps. “Both of my siblings did track, and I had an interest in doing it. I’ve been doing winter and spring track, and I’ll continue doing it through high school,” he said.

Although soccer is his main sport, Davan believes that doing track helps him preserve his fitness, since his soccer season runs all year. Soccer players’ combination of speed and endurance traditionally translates well into mid-distance events, where Davan has found his strength. He runs anything from the long sprints up to the 1000m, although mid-distance coach Dan Collins attests that he also holds a “very respectable 55m time.”

Davan believes his strongest event indoors is the 300m.

“I ran it once in the winter, and I used to run it all the time freshman and sophomore year. Running it this one time this year, I had a two-second PR,” he said.

Collins predicts that Davan will prosper in the longer events.

“Because of his soccer background, he will probably find most of his success in the 600 and 1000,” the coach said. “He also is super, super solid on the 4×4 team and probably will never not run the 4×4 just because he’s so reliable.”

Davan described the environment at indoor track meets as “crowded and stressful.” But he considers himself a superstitious person, and he combats this stress with his pre-race routines.

“I’m very superstitious with soccer and I think it carried into track. One thing I do is I can’t drink my water bottle without spitting some out,” he explained.

Davan begins his dynamic stretches before his 100m dash at the Hillers’ practice meet. (Steph Johnson)

Among his wide repertoire of events, Davan’s favorite is the 4x400m relay.

“It’s a team effort, so it’s really fun to just cheer on your team and have a collective time,” he said. “Sometimes I’m the anchor, but sometimes I also lead off.” Davan enjoys anchoring because there’s no handoff at the end.

Having observed Davan’s improvement over the past three years, Collins describes how his consistent work ethic has proved essential to the junior’s performance.

“Track is really hard in the sense that it takes a long time to trust in a process. It’s tough to trust in something and understand that what you’re doing now is going to pay off not this week or next week, but maybe in four or five months,” the mid-distance coach described. “Ethan has totally bought into a process and is finding that it’s working for him. I think he kind of epitomizes what a steady work ethic will do for an athlete, especially in track and field.”

Beyond his work ethic, Collins believes that one of Davan’s biggest strengths is his selflessness. He described the athlete as quiet and humble, yet one of the most encouraging teammates. He demonstrates his support and leadership through the little things, like volunteering if a teammate needs someone to run with, or handing out the bands before a strengthening session.

“Little moves like that are what make a team a team,” Collins said.

Davan prepares for the gunshot as he waits in his blocks.

But on the oval, Davan is confident that speed is one of his best assets.

“I do somewhat longer distances for a mid-distance runner. I think speed helps, especially in the 600; you have to maintain speed, and I think that’s one of my strengths. I think that definitely comes from soccer.”

With three high school seasons left, Davan hopes to improve on endurance. “My goals for next year are to build stamina because I know I have speed, but I want to maintain that speed. That’s one of the strategies for the 600. I think building stamina over time would improve my times.”

“Ethan is meticulous,” Collins shared. “Everything down to the warmup he does right. I just anticipate and hope that because of his work ethic, he will continue to be an awesome leader.”

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