by Brandon Loiler, Sports Information Assistant
NORTH CENTRAL, Ill. - Team Kayla combined for three top 10 finishes at the NCAA Div. III Indoor Track & Field Championships on March 10-11 at North Central's Al B. Carius Track, with Kayla Leland finishing fourth in the mile run for All-America honors in addition to a new Whitworth record.
Leland entered the event with the 14th fastest time in Division III of 4:59.13. After winning her heat in the preliminaries in 5:00.74, she entered the finals with the third fastest time behind Emily Richards from Ohio Northern and Maya Weigel from Pomona Pitzer. Out of the 17 competitors in the preliminaries, the top three from each heat as well as the next four best times advanced to the finals.
Leland's ran a 4:55.07 en route to a fourth place finish, All-America honors, new personal-record, and new school-record. Richards repeated in the event, finishing over two seconds faster than second place Marissa Coombs from Virginia Wesleyan in 4:51.51. Coombs (4:54.01), Weigel (4:54.87), and Leland finished second, third, and fourth place within a 1.06 second spread.
Brase entered the 2017 Indoor Championships with the 15th best triple jump mark in the nation of 38' 0.25".The preliminary field consisted of 17 competitors with the top nine advancing to the finals.In the preliminaries, Brase leaped an identical distance to her final mark at 38' 8.75 inches to advance to the finals in ninth place..
In the finals, Brase finished just behind Victoria Amadi from Hendrix at 39' 3". Alexa Wandy from SUNY Geneso won the event with a final mark of 41' 5.75 inches. Wandy's distance was a new Division III record and a new Al B. Carius Track facility, previous NCAA Div. III record was held by Shimera Daniels from Wheaton.
Brase's final distance at the indoor championships is a new personal-record, out jumping her previous triple jump record of 38' 4" which she recorded at the 2016 Sasquatch Carnival.
Leland entered the Div. III Indoor Championships with the 15th best time in the country. She advanced to the finals with a time of 2:13.94 in the preliminaries, entering Saturday in the fifth spot. The top two from each preliminary heat as well as the next four fastest times advanced to Saturday's finals.
In the finals, Leland finished eighth in 2:19.03, earning All-America status. Richards earned her second title of the day in 2:10.38.
Click here for full results from the 2017 Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships.
With today marking the conclusion of the 2016-17 indoor track & field season, team Kayla and the Pirates will turn focus towards the outdoor season, resuming with the Buc Scoring Meet at the Whitworth Pine Bowl on Saturday, March 18 at 10:00 a.m.