In her final college cross country race, Erika Kemp earned All-America honors by placing 17th of 250 entrants in the NCAA Cross Country Championships Saturday at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Ind.
Kemp, a Mount Holly native and Rancocas Valley graduate, helped N.C. State place fourth overall in the country, the Wolfpack’s best finish since the 2001 team placed second.
Kemp ran 20:10.6 over the 6,000-meter course, finishing just eight seconds out of the top 10 and 29 seconds behind winner Karissa Schweitzer.
Kemp’s best previous finish at NCAA cross country was 57th last year. Including indoor and outdoor track, she’s now a three-time NCAA All-America.
N.C. State scored 223 points, finishing 98 behind overall winner Oregon, who scored 125 and won by one point over Michigan. Colorado was third with 134 and N.C. State was on the podium for the first time in 14 years with 223 points for fourth.
Kemp ran 10:40 for 3,200 meters for R.V. in 2012, winning the state Group 4 title and placing fifth in the Meet of Champions.
Kemp’s 17th-place finish matches the best by an N.C. women since 2006, when Julia Lucas placed fourth (although she ran 38 seconds slower than Kemp on the same course). In 2009, Emily Pritt also placed 17th.