VESTAL (WBNG) -- Binghamton senior and Union-Endicott graduate Emily Mackay will head to Oklahoma for the NCAA championship meet next week.
Mackay took home the America East women's individual title last Friday, punching her ticket to nationals with a time of 17:27:01 in the 5,000-meter course.
"The goal was to stay as comfortable as possible for as long as possible, and then to just give it all I had at the very finish," said Mackay. "Going into the last stretch, I felt very comfortable and very confident."
The win marked Binghamton's first female runner to advance to the NCAA Division I championships. Mackay is also the first Binghamton female runner to win a conference cross country title since 1983 when Binghamton still competed at the Division III level.
"It means a lot," said Mackay. "It was a big goal of mine and it was something I was looking forward to for the past few months and I worked really hard for. So for that goal to come true, it's very special. "
"To have a female is fantastic. We've wanted to do that for quite some time, so very exciting for our program," said head coach Annette Acuff.
Acuff said Mackay is talented both physically and mentally and will do well at NCAA's.
"She's been able to develop really well the past four years she's been here at Binghamton," she said. "She's very composed, very calm demeanor which I think is excellent for high-profile, champion meets...She really loves challenging herself."
The NCAA champions take place Monday at Oklahoma State.