Freshman Octavious Freeman and sophomore Aurieyall Scott are one step closer to London after their performances in the 200-meter preliminaries Thursday night at the USA Olympic Trials. The pair ran automatic qualifying times to advance to Friday’s semifinals at 6 p.m. on NBC Sports Network.
Scott rewrote the school record with a personal-best 22.72 (+0.8) en route finishing second in the fifth heat and fifth overall. She emerged as the second-fastest collegian of the day, runner-up only to NCAA champion Kimberlyn Duncan, who won the first heat in 22.69.
“It’s nice to see Aurieyall come back and run well, especially when the conditions aren’t at their best. It’s a little bit chilly and nippy here,” UCF head coach Caryl Smith Gilbert said. “I’m delighted that she came around and ran her race. I look forward to seeing her and Octavious run tomorrow.”
Freeman effortlessly finished second in her heat and ninth overall with a time of 22.93 (+0.8). Of the 21 competitors who advanced to the semifinals, six are collegians, and UCF is the only school to boast multiple entries in the event.
Scott and Freeman were also two of five collegiate athletes – once again the only two from the same school – who advanced to the 100-meter semifinals last Saturday but missed the cut for the finals.
A third Knight will join the sprinters in action on Friday as Sonnisha Williams will compete in the long jump at 6:30 p.m. ET. She aspires to reach Sunday’s final round of 12 participants.