Strong Showings from Knights at First Day at Penn State

Jan. 29, 2011

UCF Results in PDF Format

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By Pat Salvas

COLLEGE STATION, Pa. (UCFAthletics.com) - The UCF indoor track & field season is just three weeks old and already it is apparent that there is no hangover from last spring's Conference USA outdoor title. The Knights proved that once again on Friday night at the Penn State National Invitational against some of the best competition in the country.

Competing in a grueling all-day event like Friday is something that head coach Caryl Smith Gilbert and her coaching staff planned for in the week leading up to the meet.

"This is the third week of travel for us. We have to be smart and pick and choose our races," Smith Gilbert said. "Our goals are to keep everyone healthy so that we are ready for the conference and national meets. Some people need more rest than others, so we understood that we would have to decide when we were going to race and when we were going to rest."

Junior Jackie Coward was one of three Knights to win her preliminary heat in the 60-meter hurdles Friday. Running in the fourth heat, Coward crossed first in 8.28 to qualify for the semifinals. Seniors Karessa Farley (8.36) and Mica Wimberly (8.42)also won their heats and qualified for the next round.

The three would run in the semifinals later in the afternoon. Coward came out strong in her second race of the day, posting the best time in the semifinals by any runner with an 8.18; just two-hundredths of a second off her school-record time set last week at Virginia Tech. Wimberly's time of 8.39 in the semis was a new personal record.

Choosing to rest Coward rather than risk injury with a third race in a matter of hours, Smith Gilbert opted not to have the junior hurdler run in the finals of the event.

"I was very happy with Jackie's pefrformance today," UCF's head coach said. "But today is just so long that I did not want to make her run another race without the right rest."

In the 60-meter dash, freshman Dominique Booker continues to be a dominant force for the Knights. Just three weeks into her college career, Booker has already set the school and freshman record in this event twice. Friday night, she once again put forth an impressive finish, crossing the line one-hundredth of a second off her own record time in 7.27 in the semifinals. Booker began her night with a 7.37 in the preliminaries.

Last week in Blacksburg, Va., Booker ran a 7.26 just seven days after setting the previous record of 7.29 at the Kentucky Invitational to start the season. She now has the three of the top four program marks in this event in just three meets.

Junior Sheila Paul, senior Lynne Layne and freshman Tyler Smith also ran in the 60 meters on Friday night. Layne finished eighth in the preliminaries in a new personal record time of 7.51 to qualify for the semis. Paul also qualified seventh overall in 7.48. Despite not qualifying, Smith's 7.60 was a new personal record as she finished 17th.

Paul, Layne and Booker all qualified for the finals with strong showings in the semifinals. Booker, like Coward, was first in her event after the semifinals, but did not run in the finals. Paul also abstained from the finals after a personal-record time of 7.39 in the semis, leaving Layne as the lone UCF representative.

Her time of 7.50 was good for fifth place. Layne also represented the Knights in the long jump, placing 13th with a mark of 18-5.75/5.63m.

Freshman Sandy Jean was another busy Knight on Friday, competing in the pentathlon. Jean placed seventh overall with 3,303 points to break the UCF freshman record of 3,229 previously held by Sheree Carter.

Jean's time of 9.06 in the 60-meter hurdles was two-hundredths of a second better than her previous best in the event, placing eighth and earning 897 points. She was also tied for eighth in the high jump (5-03.25/1.61m -747 pts), seventh in the 800 meters (2:30.58 - 686 pts), 11th in the long jump (16-05.00/5.00m - 559 pts) and 17th in the shot put (26-11.75/8.22m - 414 pts).

"Sandy was a pleasant surprise today," Smith Gilbert said. "I was pleased with how well she did across the board and it's always good when someone breaks a record like she did."

Rounding out the day was freshman Satrina Oliveira in the 20-pound weight throw. The first-year Knight's throw of 39-4.50/12.00m was a new personal-best mark and helped her to a 31st-place finish.

"I am looking forward to tomorrow, but it also good to know that we have some time off next week," Smith Gilbert said. "It will be good to have that time to get back and train for the Tyson Invitational in two weeks before another break and then the conference meet."

UCF will wrap up its weekend at Penn State tomorrow with six events. The rest of the Knights will begin the two-day Jimmy Carnes Indoor Meet at Florida's O'Connell Center tomorrow in Gainesville as well.

Place Points
7. Sandy Jean3303

Place (Heat) Time/mark
1. (2) Karessa Farley 8.36q
1. (3) Mica Wimberly 8.42q
1. (4) Jackie Coward 8.28q

1. Jackie Coward 8.18q
10. Karessa Farley 8.37
12. Mica Wimberly 8.39


Place Time/mark
2. Dominique Booker 7.37q
7. Sheila Paul 7.48q
8. Lynne Layne 7.51q
17. Tyler Smith 7.60

1. Dominique Booker 7.27q
5. Sheila Paul 7.39q
8. Lynne Layne 7.48q

5. Lynne Layne 7.50

Weight Throw
Place Time/mark
31. Satrina Oliveira 39-4.50/12.00m

Long Jump
Place Time/mark
13. Lynne Layne 18-5.75/5.63m