MOUNT VERNON, Iowa -- Juniors Mwale Kapande and Larissa Wilden hit automatic qualifying marks for the NAIA indoor national meet and shattered a pair of school records over the weekend at the Hilltop Invitational hosted by Cornell at the Small Multi-Sport Center.
Kapande destroyed her own school record by 10 inches in the long jump with a leap of 17'-10 3/4". That also surpassed the NAIA's automatic qualifying standard by two inches and is the best leap in the Midwest Collegiate Conference this season. She won the long jump and was second in the 60 meter dash with a time of :08.01 in the finals.
Wilden broke Mount Mercy's 16-year-old high jump record with an MCC-leading leap of 5'-5 1/4". The previous mark of 5'-4 1/2" was held by former all-American Stephanie Martin in 1996. Wilden won the event and went over the automatic qualifying standard by almost an inch. She also placed fourth in the 60 meter hurdles with a time of :09.61 in the finals.
Junior Jenna Higgins also had an outstanding meet, winning the 60 meters with the top two times in school history. She ran :07.77 in the preliminaries and followed that with a :07.72 in the finals to set a new school record. It was also the top time in the MCC this season. Higgins was runner-up in the 200 meters with the second-fastest time in school history (:26.52).
Senior Jacqueline Kane finished second in the 800 meter run with a time of 2:22.09, which ranks third all-time. Senior Cortni Kooi was fourth in the long jump (15'-4 3/4") and the 4x400 meter relay team took third (4:16.69).
Junior Andre Moodie continued a strong indoor season with a second-place finish in the 800 meters for the Mustangs men. His time of 2:00.31 was just off Ryan Scheckel's school record of 1:59.25 set in 2000 and is the fastest time in the MCC in 2012.
Junior Nathan Stern shattered the school record in the shot put with a toss of 48'-2 3/4". That is third in the MCC this season and was nearly six inches farther than Nate Lahner's mark of 42'-4 1/4" set in 2008. Freshman Tyler Hartley put up a top-10 finish as well, taking eighth in the mile run in 4:42.04. His time is sixth in the MCC this winter.
A pair of relay teams finished second on Saturday. The 4x800 meter relay squad was runner-up in 8:27.23, which ranks first in the conference so far, while the distance medley relay team was second in 12:20.22.
This weekend is the MCC Indoor Championships on Saturday in Sterling, Ill.