Rayniah Jones Shines as Knights Conclude Regular Season at East Coast Relays

by Alex Clough

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The UCF track and field team’s first regular season as a member of the Big 12 conference concluded Saturday afternoon as once again, multiple Knights set personal bests at the East Coast Relays, hosted by North Florida at Jax Track at Hodges Stadium.

The 4x100m squad continues to find its stride ahead of the Big 12 Outdoor Championships in Waco, Texas, next month. This afternoon, the Knights’ quartet of Ani Wells, Rayniah Jones, Paige Archer and I’Asia Wilson placed third, matching their season best with a time of 43.92.

Against teams from Campbell, Coastal Carolina, Jacksonville and Tulane, the Knights ran the fastest collegiate team and remained among the top 20 in the nation.

In the lone distance event of Saturday’s action, Kendall Hughes offered a great performance in her final meet of the regular season, placing 13th with her time of 2:13.16.

Jones’ day continued with the 100m hurdles, as her Big 12 lead was solidified with a season-best 12.77 and a first-place finish. The composed performance from the senior was followed by a breakthrough in the 100m dash, as her 11.55 marked a season-best and placed her in third.

The eight-time All-American was followed by four more Knights, led by I’Asia Wilson’s ninth-place time of 11.64, as she remains in a strong position entering the conference championships in two weeks.

Janyah Jasper, Paige Archer and Ani Wells finished back-to-back-to-back in 21st, 22nd and 3rd, as Jasper clocked in at 11.98. Just behind her was Archer’s 11.99, while Wells rounded out the field with her 12-flat.

In the triple jump, three Knights performed their way into the top 15, with Asherah Collins setting the pace once again in fourth. Her 13.00m mark secured the senior with three straight meets hitting 13 meters.

Natalia Madison followed in 10th at 12.39m, while Alexis Waller continued her career weekend with a 12.29m jump and a new personal best.

The Black and Gold will remain in Orlando next weekend to prepare for their inaugural Big 12 Outdoor Championships, which will serve as another test for the program and its new era. Hosted by Baylor, the three-day meet will be held at the Clyde Hart Track and Field Stadium from May 9-11.