LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center in Louisville’s West End hosted the first ever HBCU Indoor Classic on Friday.

What You Need To Know

  • The Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center hosted the HBCU Indoor Classic on Friday

  • The HBCU Indoor Classic was the first meet of its kind in the region

  • Over 80 athletes competed in the inaugural meet

Seven historically Black colleges and university teams and over 80 athletes, including members from the Jamaican National team, competed.

“My dad was actually my coach. He was a coach at my middle school and I was just in a lot of sports so it was something to try,” Central State University freshman Reaghan Wakefield said.

Wakefield has been competing since the 7th grade, and has even managed to get a personal best jump of 5’6. One more inch and Wakefield will qualify for nationals.

“I just go out and jump, it's just jumping for fun and seeing how far I can go is just exciting,” Wakefield said.

Kentucky State University Mighty Marching Thorobreds traveled to support the KSU track team. (Spectrum News 1/Erin Wilson)

The meet featured historically Black colleges and universities from across the country.

“HBCU’s have such a rich culture in and of themselves and have contributed so much to this country and really the globe, and so we wanted to be able to honor that,” said Lyndon Pryor, chief engagement officer for the Louisville Urban League.

Wakefield and her team from Central State University traveled from Ohio to compete along other HBCU’s including Kentucky State University, Alcorn State University, Lane College, Benedict College and members of the Jamaican National Team.

“This is the first Black meet and it's just exciting to see new talent,” Wakefield said.

It was an event that impacts more than just the city of Louisville.

“West Louisville has been traditionally underserved and these type of investments, not only of money and financial resources but also bringing events and bringing people and attendees from other states,” Dior Cotten, population health strategy leader for Humana said.

It's a huge benefit for the athletes who traveled to compete in the inaugural meet.

“Learning new people is like my favorite thing and being able to talk to other teams about their school is pretty exciting,” Wakefield said.

The HBCU Indoor Classic was the first meet of its kind in the region. The Louisville Urban League also invited JCPS students and teachers to the event to learn more about HBCU’s.