Forness & Mercil Go Back-2-Back

Mikayla Forness (L) and Mandy Mercil won individual events on Day 1 at the MIAC Outdoor Championship Meet.
Mikayla Forness (L) and Mandy Mercil won individual events on Day 1 at the MIAC Outdoor Championship Meet.

ST. PAUL, Minn. (5/12/17)---Mikayla Forness and Mandy Mercil went back-to-back as event champions and helped Concordia into third place after the first day at the MIAC Championship Meet.

Forness earned her second straight conference javelin title while Mercil backed up her indoor championship in the shot put with a win at the outdoor event. The 20 team points earned by the two seniors pushed the Cobbers to 35.14 team points which is 11 points ahead of St. Olaf who is in fourth place.

Not only did Forness win the javelin but she also put up her season best mark which pushes her into the Top 6 in the country. Forness uncorked a throw of 144-07 on her very first throw to post a statement to the rest of the field that she was once again the athlete to beat in the event.

Forness' finishing distance was just over a foot better than the next competitor and more than six feet further than her previous season best.

Mercil capped her conference career by adding the outdoor shot put championship to her indoor title. She won the outdoor championship with a mark of 46-02.50. Mercil won the shot put on her first attempt in the finals but then bettered that on the final try in the finals. Her mark on that last throw was almost four feet better than the next competitor and is a season best distance. The 46-02.50 toss is the eighth farthest in Division III this year and puts her in the conversation to go to her very first NCAA Outdoor Meet.

Freshman Erin Hillerud was the other Cobber individual to score team points on the opening day. She cleared the bar 9-09.00 in the pole vault and finished in a tie for eighth place.

The Cobbers had a pair of athletes earn ninth-place finishes which was one place out of scoring team points. Jenna Stilwell was ninth in the javelin with a distance of 113-05 while freshman Mollie Francis was ninth in the long jump with a mark of 16 -08.75.

The other team points for Concordia came from the 4x800 relay team of Forness, Maria West, Isabelle Andriessen and Sara Whiteman who ran a 9:36.97 which was good for seventh place and is the 11th fastest in program history.

In addition to the event Top 9 place winners on Day 1, the Cobbers had several athletes qualify for finals on Saturday.  Forness and Andriessen will compete in the finals of the 400-meter hurdles. Forness qualified with the fourth fastest time as she posted a time of 1:05.13 from the third heat. Andriessen was in the second heat and crossed the line in 1:07.33. Her time was the sixth fastest out of the 26 competitors in the event.

Junior Hannah Lundstrom got to the track just in time to qualify for the finals in the 200 meters. She ran a time of 25.44 which tied for the third fastest mark in the prelims. She was only .24 of a second behind the fastest time and is in position to earn her second conference title in the 200 meters. Lundstrom also won the event in her freshman season in 2015.

MEET PICTURES: Click on the link below to see a great group of pictures from the MIAC Meet which are available for purchase and come courtesy of former Cobber Nathan Lodermeier.

Link to Nathan Lodermeier's meet pictures

WHAT'S NEXT: Concordia will go for its 28th straight Top 5 finish at the MIAC outdoor meet on Saturday when they compete in Day 2 at Hamline starting at 11:30 a.m.