UCF Set To Open Season at FAU Invitational

ORLANDO - The UCF cross country team opens the 2021 season on Wednesday as the Knights travel to Boca Raton for the FAU Invitational.
The women's 5K race is slated for a 7 p.m. start at South County Park in Boca Raton.
The field features 10 teams from the Sunshine State. In addition to the Black and Gold and host FAU, Bethune-Cookman, Florida A&M, FGCU, FIU, Miami, Stetson, Keiser and Lynn will all have competitors in the race.
UCF returns to fall action after competing in a two-race spring slate due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During the shortened season, the Knights took the team title at the UCF Invite and finished fifth at the American Athletic Conference Championship.
Coach Bryan Jackson returns key pieces to his roster in 2021. Valerie Lastra, the 2020 American Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year and all-conference honoree, headlines 11 returners. The Miami native set both the freshman 5K and 6K records in two races last season while also capturing the UCF Cross Country Invite individual title.
THe Knights also return Charlotte Crook and Katie Pinnell, who have both posted top 60 finishes at The American Championship, along with Alexandra Del Re, who finished second behind Lastra at the UCF Invite.
UCF also added eight freshmen, all hailing from Florida. The homegrown talent gives the Knights depth on their distance roster.
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