15 NCAA Div. III individual championships
WAVERLY—The Central College men’s and women’s track and field squads concluded their weekend at the Wartburg Select Saturday with a trio of new school records. Eric Larson (sophomore, Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) broke his own school mark in the heptathlon while Felicia Coleman (senior, Houston, Texas, J. Frank Dobie HS) reset her records in the 60-meter and 200-meter dash.
Coleman cruises to two victories—Coleman continued her revision of the Dutch record books Saturday en route to a pair of individual wins. She began the day by lowering the 60-meter dash mark set in December from 7.85 seconds to 7.79. Her encore was a blistering 25.23-second 200-meter dash performance, more than a half-second faster than her previous best of 25.75.
“Felicia is running as well as she ever has,” said Dunham. “She has gotten better every time that she steps out on the track. That is a testament to her hard work and Coach Fuller has done a great job of getting her ready to compete.”
The 200 meters is not contested at the NCAA Division III championships, but her 60-meter mark is currently tied for the ninth fastest time in the nation.
Other notable performances include a runner-up finish for Mel McDermott (senior, Britt, West Hancock HS) in the 3,000 meters (10:43.37) and third-place finishes for Elin Phipps (freshman, Boone) in the 800 meters (2:21.45) and Jess Fevold (senior, Webster City) in the weight throw (15.01).
Larson puts up strong NCAA mark—Larson completed the final three events of the heptathlon Saturday to finish second with a score of 4,882 points. That mark was more than 100 points ahead of his previous best of 4,749 which earned him an all-America plaque at the 2012 NCAA indoor meet. He is currently ranked third in Division III.
“It’s always exciting to see someone put up a strong qualifying mark like Eric did,” said Dunham. “He’s not guaranteed to get into the national meet, but we feel good about where he is at.”
Elsewhere, Eli Horton (sophomore, Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) won the Mile (4:19.12) with teammate Drew Jackson (sophomore, Johnston) close behind in third (4:20.63), while Cole Decker (freshman, Des Moines, West Des Moines Dowling HS) easily took the 3,000-meters (8:45.15). The 4x200 relay of Mitch Wagoner (junior, Iowa Falls, Iowa Falls-Alden HS), Logan Danko (senior, Centerville), Philip Heisterkamp (senior, Jefferson, Jefferson-Scranton HS), and Mason Zimmerman (sophomore, Urbandale) was second (1:31.2) while the 4x400 relay of Spencer Hammack (freshman, Ottumwa), Tyler Westphal (senior, Le Mars), Drake Hickok (freshman, Cedar Rapids, Washington HS), and Austin Roberts (freshman, Bloomfield, Davis County HS) was third (3:26.04).
“The team is right about where I expect them to be at this point in the season,” said Dunham. “The important thing is that they competed hard today. We’ll look to carry that over into the next few weeks.
The Dutch will send a small contingent of athletes to the Iowa State Classic Friday, while the full squad will compete at the Grinnell College Darren Young Classic Saturday.
We’re looking forward to what we can do next week at Grinnell,” said Dunham. “But our emphasis is always on the championship part of the season.”