Knights Place Eighth at the Conference USA Championships

Nov. 1, 2008

Meet Results

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Led by senior Shantile Blackburn (Brooklyn, N.Y.), the UCF cross country team finished eighth at the Conference USA cross country championships Saturday morning in Memphis, Tenn. SMU claimed three of the top 10 spots and won the event with 40 points.

"Today's performance was bittersweet," said head coach Caryl Smith Gilbert. "We had a lot of great efforts out there, but we have a long way to go. Physically we are better than eighth place, but mentally we did not show up as we could have. Hats off to our two seniors, Allison Palmer (Oviedo, Fla.) and Shantile Blackburn. It was their last conference meet and they did well. Erica Weitz (Morganville, N.J.) had a gritty race and finished well. We will now move on and begin to prepare both physically and mentally to have a strong race at regionals in two weeks."

Following the Mustangs, Rice (50 points) finished second, Tulsa (77) was third, UAB (116) fourth and Houston (145) rounded out the top five. UCF finished in eighth with 198 points.

Blackburn took 23rd place, finishing the 5K course in 18:24. It was the fourth time this season that Blackburn paced the Knights. Weitz was the second UCF runner to finish, claiming 40th-place in 19:05. Ocean Cohen (Sarasota, Fla.), Palmer and Katrina Skinner (Tampa, Fla.) rounded out the Knights' five finishers in 42nd, 46th and 47th.

"Overall, I think they competed great, worked hard and gave their all," said assistant coach Tyangela Sanders. "It is an unfortunate situation because we felt we could do better. We ran better than we did last year, but we just did not place as high."

SMU's Silje Fjortoft claimed the individual title at the event, running the course in 16:46.

In two weeks on Nov. 15, the Knights will compete in the NCAA South Region Championships in Knoxville, Tenn.

For the latest news on the Knights, log on to www.UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains ticket and Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit www.UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.

2008 Conference USA Championships
University of Memphis (Memphis, Tenn.)
Nov. 1, 2008 - 5K

1. SMU
2. Rice
3. Tulsa
4. UAB
5. Houston
6. East Carolina
8. UCF
9. Tulane
10. Marshall
11. Southern Miss
12. Memphis

UCF Individual Results
23. Shantile Blackburn, 18:24
40. Erica Weitz, 19:05
42. Ocean Cohen, 19:12
46. Allison Palmer, 19:28
47. Katrina Skinner, 19:36
53. Shannon Kelly, 19:50
58. Kathia Skinner, 20:07