Jan. 28, 2011
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) -
The UCF track & field team is ranked 15th in the nation by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association's (USTFCCCA) in its first national poll of the indoor season. The No. 15 ranking marks the first time in program history that the Knights have cracked the indoor Top 25.
The Black and Gold began 34th nationally in the preseason rankings before jumping up 19 spots following strong showings on consecutive weekends at Kentucky and Virginia Tech. UCF's 19-spot rise is the largest by any team in the top 25 on either the men or women's side.
The USTFCCCA's weekly coaches' poll also has the Knights as the top team in the state as they rank third in the South Region. South Florida (No. 4), Florida (No. 5) and Florida State (No. 9) all finished below UCF in the first regional ranking of the year. National powers Tennessee and Mississippi were first and second in the South Region, respectively.
Sophomore Sonnisha Williams helped the Knights to a strong showing in Blacksburg, Va., this past weekend, finishing first in both the high jump and long jump. Her two first-place showings, including a school record and a provisional qualifying mark in the long jump, earned her the Conference USA Women's Track & Field Athlete of the Week.
Junior Jackie Coward also broke a school record in the 60-meter hurdles and earned a provisional qualifying time as she ran an 8.16 on Friday at Virginia Tech. In just their second meet, Dominique Booker broke her own school and freshman record in the 60-meter dash on Friday, while fellow freshman Aurieyall Scott won the 200 meters on Saturday. Three UCF records in all were broken at the Hokie Invitational last weekend to propel the Knights up the national rankings.
UCF will look to keep its momentum going this week with two different meets. Members of the team will travel to both the Penn State National Invitational and the Jimmy Carnes Indoor Meet hosted by the University of Florida.