This past week of UCF Knights sports saw one team’s season-opening fortune continue while a couple of others encountered their first adversity of the new year.
We recap all of the action, plus we give you our Knights of the Week and Play of the Week in this edition of Knight Cap on Friday, February 2, 2024.
Men’s Tennis Winning Streak Continues vs. FGCU
Mehdi CLINCHES it— UCF Men's Tennis (@UCF_MTennis) January 27, 2024
We’ll be playing out… stay tuned! pic.twitter.com/CPKpkHwCls
The UCF Men’s Tennis team added to its season-opening winning streak with a 7-0 sweep of Florida Gulf Coast.
The Knights now stand at 5-0, an opening record not seen since 1999. It also marks the first time this season UCF has won the doubles point.
Doubles point secured ✅— UCF Men's Tennis (@UCF_MTennis) January 27, 2024
Emilio and Toto take court 3️⃣ (6-4)! pic.twitter.com/dc0otXIY1E
The Knights will have a weeklong break before hosting Florida Atlantic at the USTA National Campus on Feb. 8, followed by another home tilt with Miami (FL) on Feb. 11.
Track and Field distance runners take on Clemson
The UCF Track and Field distance squad traveled to Clemson for its third meet of the indoor season in the Bob Pollack Invitational.
Fifth-year Charlotte Crook led the way with a 2:09.79 time and a silver medal as the Knights took three of the top six spots in the 800-meter run.
Also, a young group of freshmen Abigail Stratton, Hannah Taylor, Karin Dobiasch and junior Lillian Holtery teamed up to run the fifth-fastest distance medley in program history with an 11:41.03 that earned them a bronze medal.
For the full results from the Bob Pollack Invitational, click here.
The Sprint and field squads will be up next as they travel to Boston for the Crimson Elite on Friday followed by the Scarlet & White Invite on Saturday.
Women’s Tennis drops both ITA Kickoff matches
Ready for the next challenge pic.twitter.com/Cl6CwtLKg2— UCF Women's Tennis (@UCF_WTennis) January 26, 2024
The UCF Women’s Tennis team dropped both of its ITA Kickoff Weekend matchups against #16 Oklahoma, 4-0, and Illinois, 4-3.
Junior Noel Saidenova was the only Knight to win a set in both matches, taking one against Oklahoma’s Julia Garcia Ruiz, 6-4, in a match that ultimately went unfinished, and beating Illinois’ Josie Frazier, 6-1, 6-3.
Now 1-2 and dropped from the Top 25, the Knights continue their road trip on Friday and Saturday with matchups against FIU and #21 Miami (FL) respectively.
Men’s Golf tees off spring slate
The UCF Men’s Golf team played in the Sea Best Invitational, the first tournament of its spring schedule, last weekend.
Round 1️⃣ at the Sea Best Invitational is in the books pic.twitter.com/wn7vLbDftY— UCF Men's Golf (@UCF_MGolf) January 29, 2024
Sophomore Chase Haygood, playing as an individual, was the lowest-scoring Knight in the tournament, finishing in a tie for 15th overall at 215 (5-over), 10 strokes behind the winner.
He was closely followed by senior Egor Eroshenko, who finished one stroke back at 216 (6-over) in a tie for 21st.
As a team, the Knights finished 13th in the 15-team field with an 891 (51-over) combined score, dropping them to #170 in Clippd’s rankings.
UCF will hit the course again in two and a half weeks at the Vystar Credit Union Gator Invitational in Gainesville on Feb. 17-18.
Orlando Valkyries Debut in Addition Arena
Former UCF Volleyball head coach Todd Dagenais returned to Orlando Friday night as his Atlanta Vibe took on the Orlando Valkyries in front of 5,284 spectators in Addition Financial Arena’s first Professional Volleyball Federation match.
Despite needing extra points to win Sets 2 and 3, the Vibe hung on for a 3-2 victory in their second five-set match on the road to start their inaugural season.
Former UCF Volleyball middle blocker Abby Hansen was among those who made the final roster for the Valkyries, though she did not see the court.
“She’s just got to continue to develop her game,” Valkyries head coach Amy Pauly said.
The Valkyries will be back in Addition Financial Arena on Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. to host the Vegas Thrill.
Knight of the Week
Khyala Ngodu, Women’s Basketball
True freshman center Khyala Ngodu scored a career-high 25 points and tied a career-high 12 rebounds for the first double-double of her career to help get the Women’s Basketball team its first Big 12 win against Houston.