* Erriyon Knighton had his breakthrough moment this summer at the AAU Junior Olympic Games
Photo Credit: USA Today Sports
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Three months after signing a professional contract and ending his time as a high school track and field athlete, 17-year-old Erriyon Knighton made his major league debut on Saturday in Clermont, Florida, running a wind-legal 20.31 (+1.7) seconds in the 200m at the Pure Athletics Spring Invitational.
Knighton took first in a loaded field which included Josephus Lyles — who in August finished second to his brother, Noah, at a Diamond League event in Monaco, France — and 2017 London World Championship 200m bronze Medalist Jereem Richards.
Knighton’s time, an improvement from his breakout 200m performance of 20.33 last year at the AAU Junior Olympics, is currently tied for the seventh fastest in the world and US No. 1 for high school-aged performers.
Beyond his 200m performance, he also registered a wind-legal 100m time of 10.29.
He finished the 2020 season with the No. 11 best time in the world, while his 100m time was among the top 100 performances.