Multiple Mustangs Punch Tickets to Alabama
By Ryan Freeman, For TMC Sports Information
January 25, 2014
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – Conditions were prime for the men’s track team as they toed the line for the first time since the NAIA Cross Country National Championships in Lawrence for the Bakersfield Half Marathon.
The weeks of training in the offseason helped aid the outstanding performances from each individual taking 1st through 3rd overall. Most notably, freshman phenom Josh Sherfey (Stevenson Ranch, CA) ended up being the individual champion.
As the 13.1 mile race went under way, a group of five Mustangs took control of the race all throughout the first half. Of the men, both senior Matthew Crichton (Mission Viejo, CA) and junior John Hurd (Fairview, PA) dropped off the pack but ended with times of 1 hour 16 minutes and 1:16:30. Sherfey started picking up the pace at the turnaround point and held strong finishing in a blistering time of 1:09:19- the fastest time by anyone who has raced this half marathon in its 41 year history.
Junior Tyler Tockstein (Canyon Country, CA) and sophomore Ryan Freeman (Highland, CA) came through taking 2nd and 3rd with flying times of 1:10:10 and 1:11:58. Freshman Taylor Koh rounded out the Mustangs running a respectable time of 1:21:25. The trio of Josh, Tyler, and Ryan achieved the A standard, automatically qualifying them for the marathon at the NAIA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Gulf Coast, Alabama.
“Today was an outstanding day for the men in the half with three guys producing times in the top five of our program record book,” remarked head track and field coach Zachary Schroeder. “This bodes well for not only the upcoming track season, but also for the upcoming cross country season with Josh, Tyler, and Ryan running better than they ever have. Josh’s time of 1:09:19 is an outstanding mark for a freshman only thirty seconds behind John Gilbertson’s record as a senior.”
This half marathon was a good gauge for the men as they continue to train daily for their track opener for the Mangrum Invitational hosted by Cal State San Marcos on March 1, 2014.