UK Track & Field Reaches No. 4 in Women's Latest Rankings

By Jacob Most
March 2, 2015 -

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Boosted by elite season-best performances from the likes of Kendra Harrison, Dezerea Bryant and Sha'Keela Saunders at last weekend's Southeastern Conference Championships, the Kentucky women's track and field team jumped five spots to No. 4 in this week's U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) computer rankings.

The No. 4 rating ties UK's season-high, which it achieved in the preseason along with the first few weeks the rankings were released.

The SEC has each of the top-4 teams in the rankings with Conference Indoor Champions Arkansas holding the top spot, Georgia rated No. 2 and Florida checking in at No. 3.

Kentucky received a 50-point boost in the rankings this week thanks in large part to Kendra Harrison's collegiate-leading 60m hurdles time of 7.92. She recorded the time, which ranks No. 6 all-time among collegians, en route to defending her SEC Title.

Kentucky shot up the rankings because Harrison was making her season-debut, thus contributing to a greater projected NCAA score for the Wildcats.

Harrison teamed up with Bryant and Morganne Phillips and Ariah Graham to move Kentucky from No. 17 to No. 4 in the 4x400m relay rankings with a Silver Medal and school-record performance of 3:31.53.

Bryant, who was sidelined for five weeks leading up to SECs, recorded the No. 5 NCAA 200m time and matched her No. 3 NCAA 60m time at SECs in a double Silver Medal performance over the weekend.

Kentucky was also boosted by career-bests from Sha'Keela Saunders and Kenyattia Hackworth, who won the SEC Gold and Silver Medals respectively, with marks which rank second and fourth in the NCAA long jump respectively. Saunders owns the No. 9 NCAA triple jump this season.

Rebecca Famurewa ranks No. 9 in the weight throw.

The NCAA will announce the selections for the Indoor National Championships on Tuesday. The top-16 ranked declared individual entries and top-12 relays qualify.

USTFCCCA will release a pre-NCAA Championships rankings next week after the entries for the meet are announced.

The USTFCCCA National Team Computer Rankings are designed to predict which teams have the best opportunity to win the NCAA Championships.