Moorpark Raiders excel at the Track and Field Beach Opener


Moorpark College’s Marcus Fehlman (left) and Bryce Gardhouse (right) lead the way in the men’s 1500 run at the track and field Beach Opener in Long Beach, CA, on Friday, March 4, 2022. Photo credit: Christopher Schmider

By Eliz Biary

It was a beautiful day at California State Long Beach College where Moorpark College along with other fifteen schools competed at the track beach opener. The invitational was a great start to the season, allowing each team to show off their hard work.

The event was an invitational rather than a placed meet where there are no specific winners. Multiple PRs were set by the Raiders, setting a great tone to the season.

The first event of the meet was the 4×100 sprint run by Kanan Thummar, Will Davis, Colin Quinn and Ryan Tischhauser. These boys set a new PR of 41.52 placing them fourth in the state. Hummer participated in the boys’ 100-meter race as well, setting a new record. Thummar mentioned that he had stopped hammering back his arms at the 60-meter mark which is something he wants to work on throughout the season.

On another note, he has been practicing this technique of “keeping his head down until the 30-meter mark” in order to increase drive. He had successfully accomplished that, deeming a new PR.

“With just a little bit of technique work, anything is possible,” Thummar said.

Connor Gannon passes the bar in the men's pole vaulting event held at the track and field Beach Opener in Long Beach, CA, on Friday, March 4, 2022.
Connor Gannon passes the bar in the men’s pole vaulting event held at the track and field Beach Opener in Long Beach, CA, on Friday, March 4, 2022. Photo credit: Christopher Schmider

Following the first race comes the steeplechase. This was freshman, Emily Richmond’s first 3k steeplechase and she placed second overall.

“I learned so much from the race and now know which barriers I want to tap and go vs. hurdle over. Knowing these techniques will make it easier for future races,” Richmond stated. “The water pit is definitely my favorite part and I had a fun time running it.”

Sophomore, Summer Ismail, made a return to the track after recovering from a radial head fracture in her elbow. Ismail typically runs the hurdles but cannot race them as of right now, as it is a liability to her elbow. She had run the 200 and 400 meters at this meet, matching some of her season bests from last year.

“This was a great first meet back to get a feel for the track, I really think this season is gearing towards being one of the best, our team is looking great and I think state seems possible,” Ismail said. “Consistency is really important in order to set proper workouts and improve.”

Jared Rhett, a junior thrower, had some stellar throws and even qualified for the elite meet the following day. Rhett set a PR in discus the following day with a distance of 42.03 meters, a PR of 1 whole meter. On Friday, Rhett felt confident and sensed exponential growth going to these bigger meets filled with universities.

“Being surrounded by all these major four-year schools like USC, Hawaii, Cal Poly really pushed me to be my best,” Rhett stated. “My teammate Summer also keeps bribing me with a pizookie in order to PR.”

Moorpark left Long Beach confident for the upcoming season and fulfilled with the results of the meet. The bond between the team is shown immensely through cheering each other on and it may lead to lots of future success for the team.