Cross Country Set for Conference USA Championships Monday in Tulsa

Oct. 31, 2010

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By Pat Salvas
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - The UCF cross country team is set to take on the rest of the league in Monday morning's 2010 Conference USA Championships. The race is set for 10 a.m. ET at the Indian Springs Country Club in Tulsa, Okla. Tulsa will host the conference championship meet for the first time in program history.

Last season, the Knights finished ninth with 222 team points. The bright spot for UCF was senior Jamie Rzepecki finishing 21st to win the Outstanding Senior of the Year award at the 2009 C-USA Cross Country Championships at the Bear Branch Sportsfields in The Woodlands, Texas.

This season, cross country coach Paul Brown has been focusing on this meet throughout the fall. Brown's goal in his first season with the Knights has been to improve on last season's finish and he has to assets this year to make that goal a reality.

Senior Ocean Cohen (Sarasota, Fla.) has been the Knights' top runner all season. In all six races this season, Cohen has crossed the line as the first UCF finisher.

Senior Carley Dart (Whitby, Ontario) and sophomore Alyssa Franks (Tampa, Fla.) will also be in contention to help the Knights pick up points in an effort to post a strong team showing. Franks missed UCF's last race on Oct. 15 at the Hatter Invitational, but will be back on the course Monday morning.

This season, Brown has seen the immergence of freshmen Danielle Scaffidi (Northport, Fla.) and Sierra Solaun (Gainesville, Fla.) as well as strong showings from sophomores Eva Pierce (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.) and Mason Gardberg (Englewood, Fla.). Strong performances from these runners will be key to the team's success on the 5K course. UCF has seen just one conference opponent this season.

The Knights ran alongside Houston at the Disney Cross Country Classic on Oct. 9.

Following the conclusion of the women's race, the eight C-USA men's teams will compete on the 8K course. After both races have been completed, there will be an awards ceremony for both teams and individuals. The first 21 runners to finish will be named to the all-conference team. Those finishing in 1-7 spots will be named to the All-C-USA First Team, while 8-14 will be on the second and 15-21 will be on the third teams, respectively.