GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Furman senior Allie Buchalski is one of six athletes who will compete for Team USA as a member of the senior national cross country team at the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country International Challenge Saturday in Edinburgh, Scotland. The 6K race, which is set to begin at 8:30 a.m. EST, will feature teams from Britain, Europe, and the USA.
Fans can follow the event live on USATF.TV and BBC One. Buchalski will also be updating fans through the Paladin cross country team's Instagram account @runfurman.
Buchalski finished fourth with a time of 19:37 in the women's open 6K at the 2016 USATF Club Cross Country Championships last month to earn a spot on the team.
A native of Johns Creek, Ga., Buchalski, who competed at the meet as a member of the junior national cross country team in 2014, finished 14th in the 5,000m finals of the 5,000m at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships, earning second team All-American honors and becoming the first All-American in the history of the Paladin women's track and field program. Buchalski reached the finals after setting a new Paladin record with a time of 16:08.10 at the East Preliminaries. She entered the prelims ranked 19th among athletes in the East then bested her own previous school record of 16:11.71 to win her heat and notch the fastest qualifying time in the event.
The 2015 & 2016 SoCon Women's Cross Country Runner of the Year, Buchalski became the first All-American in the history of the Paladin cross country program after placing seventh at the 2015 NCAA Championships. Buchalski was chosen the SoCon Women's Indoor Track Most Outstanding Athlete after recording victories in the mile, 3,000m, and 5,000m then won the 5,000m title and finished second in the 1,500m at the SoCon Outdoor Championships. She holds the Paladin record of 10:13.10 in the 3,000m Steeplechase, an event in which she competed at the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
"We knew redshirting Allie would hurt our chance of our women's team advancing to the NCAA Championships, but despite missing qualifying by just four points with our regional performance, we never regretted Allie being able to focus on earning a spot for Team USA," said Furman head coach Robert Gary.
"There is no greater level in our sport than to represent your country," added Gary. "Allie had a tremendous run at the qualifying match, and we are excited to watch her compete at the same meet she qualified for as a junior. She will be exposed to many of the greatest distance runners in the world, and as the only collegian on the team, we are very proud and excited to be cheering for her. Assistant coach Rita Gary has done a great job developing Allie, and this is an incredibly special meet for Allie for a variety of reasons."
Julie Paré, Furman Sports Information