Knights Post Strong First Day of Outdoor


ORLANDO – The UCF track and field team posted a strong start to the outdoor season on the first day of the Black and Gold Invitational at the UCF Track Complex on Friday.
The day started with a pair of Knights making their outdoor debuts in the javelin. Holly Cassels finished fourth with a throw of 109-4/33.33m and Kennedie Reese finished seventh with a throw of 80-9/24.63m.
UCF collected a pair of podium performances in the long jump, led by Kiara Lee's second-place distance of 19-3.5/5.88m. Leiya Green landed at 19-2.5/5.85m for third place. The Knights also picked up a pair of fourth place finishes in the hammer throw and high jump to post at least one top five finish in each field event today.
Alicia Coleman opened the track events with a third-place performance in the 400-meter hurdles. She posted a 1:02.71 in her outdoor debut.
The Knights showed their depth in the 200-meter dash with five members of the Black and Gold among the top 10. Rayniah Jones led the pack, winning the event in 23.98, which is tied for the eighth-best outdoor 200m mark this season. Ciara Holback collected a podium finish with a 24.40 mark for third place. Latasha Smith won her heat and finished fourth overall in 24.47.
Valerie Lastra made her debut with a fifth-place finish in the 1500-meter run. Lastra, who has already set three freshmen records between cross country and indoor track, nearly added a fourth rookie record to her resume. Her time of 4:39.91 was just over eight seconds behind teammate Charlotte Crook's freshman record.
On the day, UCF had at least one Knight among the top five in every event in which they had a competitor.
The Knights close out the Black and Gold Invitational tomorrow. Field events begin at 9 a.m. while the track events are slated for an 11 a.m. start.
UCF Results
1. Rayniah Jones 23.98
3. Ciara Holback 24.40
4. Latasha Smith 24.47
8. Beyonce Defreitas 24.69
9. Kai'lyn Kirkland 24.72
14. Samieryah Bradwell 25.04
24. Alexis Woodley 25.55
Long Jump
2. Kiara Lee 19-3.5/5.88m
3. Leiya Green 19-2.5/5.85m
13. Kennedie Reese 16-8.5/5.09m
3. Alicia Coleman 1:02.71
4. Holly Cassels 109-4/33.33m
7. Kennedie Reese 80-9/24.63m
Hammer Throw
4. Chloe Hill 160-2/48.83m
High Jump
4. Kaliah Jones 5-5/1.65m
T7. Holly Cassels 5-3/1.60m
5. Valerie Lastra 4:39.91
8. Kaitlyn Soltis 4:44.51
10. Mariana Rodriguez 4:45.89
12. Alexandra Del Re 4:50.42
15. Mackenzie Czurak 4:53.83
2000m Steeplechase
2. Brenna Mullaney 7:53.96
3. Mikaela Brown 8:08.48