CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Sophomore Koko Mensah (Orange, N.J.) recorded one of the nation's top 10 marks in the shot put and classmate Alicia Palmer (Bloomfield, Conn.) anchored a 4x400-meter relay which smashed a school record to lead the Connecticut College women's track & field team at a final qualifier meet being hosted by MIT on Thursday evening.
Mensah, who entered the evening ranked 22nd in the country, solidified her chances of competing at the NCAA Championships for the first time of her career by registering a mark of 45-feet, 8.50-inches in her premier event. The throw was a personal-best for the sophomore by more than a foot.
The Camels closed out the meet on a high note by having its 4x400-meter relay team punch in a school-record time of 3:58.30, which smashed the previous program standard of 4:02.74 that was recorded in 2003. Senior Olivia Vener (Marblehead, Mass.) led off with a split time of 1:02.39, junior Shannon Kennedy (East Longmeadow, Mass.) completed the second leg in 58.45 seconds, and freshman Sarah Clark (Cheshire, Conn.) followed with a split of 59.80 on the third leg. Palmer then ran a blistering time of 57.53 on the anchor leg to lead the group to a third-place finish.
Select members of the Connecticut College women's track & field team will now wait to see if they will have the opportunity to compete at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships in La Crosse, Wisconsin from May 26-28 when qualifiers are announced on Saturday. Mensah is currently ranked among the top 22 nationally in the shot put, while senior Aly Saperstein (Simsbury, Conn.) and Kennedy both have marks which rank among the top 25 in the javelin and heptathlon, respectively.