No. 9 Track and Field Travels South for Hurricane Alumni Invitational

by Alex Clough

ORLANDO – The UCF track and field team will remain in the Sunshine State as it’s set to travel south for the Hurricane Alumni Invitational in Coral Gables. Hosted by Miami, the Knights have consistently made the trip under head coach Dana Boone, with this weekend serving as another opportunity against some top programs in the nation.

Saturday’s action will be broadcast on ESPN+ and live results will be available here.

This weekend will mark the first multis slate for the Knights, as Holly Cassels, Natalia Madison and Y’Vette Harris will embark on their first heptathlon of the season. The trio excelled in the pentathlon during the indoor campaign, as Harris secured the freshman record, while Cassels and Madison both climbed up the all-time charts.

UCF in the Polls

After debuting 10th in the nation following the team’s opening home meets in Orlando, the Knights climbed up the latest USTFCCCA Rankings, slotting in at No. 9. The position marks the second-consecutive season UCF has been highlighted in the top 10 in the opening two polls, as its performance at the Florida Relays proved to be worthy of a higher position.

The Knights are among five Big 12 teams in the top 10, joining BYU (fourth), Texas (seventh), TCU (eighth) and Texas Tech (10th). UCF was also tabbed the third-ranked program in the south region, following only Ole Miss (fifth) and Georgia (sixth).

Among in-state competition, the Knights lead the field, charging ahead of No. 12 Florida as the two represent the state in the top 25.

Nationally-Ranked Knights

Led by Rayniah Jones’ performance at the Florida Relays, multiple athletes rank among the top in the nation. The aforementioned All-American clocked a 12.78 in her second 100m hurdles of the campaign, as she is now of three to have gone sub-12.80 seconds in the world this year, where she currently ranks second.

Kiah Williams currently stands eighth in the 200m and fifth in the 400m, as the latter was secured following her personal best in the event and a second-place finish in Gainesville (51.55). Her 200m performance at the Knights Invite (22.95) marks back-to-back meets dropping her personal bests.

Similar to her fellow senior, Asherah Collins also places in the top 10 in two events. At the Florida Relays, Collins neared her program record in the triple jump with her 13.30m performance to place third. The mark secures the All-American fifth in the nation, leading her placement in 10th in the long jump following her personal-best 6.45m at the Knights Invite.