Competing for the Black and Gold on the nation’s grandest stage, Aurieyall Scott made history on Saturday night.
The junior track and field star became UCF’s first NCAA champion of any sport by claiming first place in the 60 meters at the NCAA Indoor Championships. She joins an elite group of Knights who have won national championships: cheerleading (UCA; 2003, 2007) and volleyball (AIAW; 1978).
“What a historic night for UCF track and field,” UCF head coach Caryl Smith Gilbert said. “We had two unbelievable performances. Aurieyall Scott is an NCAA champion and Octavious Freeman was third in the 60 meters. As a team, we finished fifth with only two athletes scoring. I am very proud and excited for the great weekend they had, and this is just an indication of things to come for the outdoor season. Both of these young women have sacrificed a lot and worked very hard to get to this point, so it is exciting to watch them reap the benefits of their work.”
Scott matched her personal record 7.13, which is fifth-fastest time in collegiate history and makes her the fourth-best performer in the event all-time. She edged Oregon’s reigning champion English Gardner (7.15) and was joined on the medalist stand by her teammate and roommate Freeman, who earned her second bronze medal with a season-best time of 7.16.
Coupled with their silver and bronze finishes in Friday’s 200 meters, UCF’s dynamic duo were responsible for scoring the most points in program history (30) at the NCAA Championships for the Knights’ best finish ever at fifth place.
After their performances this weekend, Scott is now an 11-time All-American and Freeman is a six-time All-American.
UCF opens the outdoor season Saturday in Orlando with the first of its two home meets. The Black and Gold Challenge will start at 9 a.m. with the javelin at the UCF Track and Field Complex.