EUGENE, Ore. Emma Bates had just run 25 brutal laps inside the nation's most famous track and field stadium.
The race was exhausting.
The finish was close.
And, for one tiny second, her mind went blank.
"I was really confused when I crossed the finish line,'' Bates said late Thursday night. "I had to look at the scoreboard. ... It's definitely shocking.''
Boise State's most dominant track and field athlete ever, who once qualified for her high school varsity cross country team in Minnesota as a seventh-grader, won the 10,000 meters at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Hayward Field.
She is the ninth athlete to win an NCAA individual title at Boise State, and the first woman to win an NCAA outdoor track title. She also has eight All-American awards more than any other Bronco track and field athlete in history.
Bates, who finished third last year, took the lead with 300 meters remaining. Her final sprint started somewhere between the final 10 to 20 meters.
She finished in 32 minutes, 32.35 seconds to edge Alabama-Birmingham senior Elinor Kirk (32:32.99).
"My form was all over the place, and I knew she had a kick, but I just dug really deep and it worked out,'' Bates said.
Scroll down to watch Bates discuss her win with letsrun.com in a post-race interview.
Sylvia Mosqueda (Cal State Los Angeles) holds the NCAA Division I championship record with a 32:28.57 in 1988. Bates wants that mark next year.
"I would really like to do that,'' she said.
Bates runs the 5,000 on Saturday, an event she finished seventh in last year.
Boise State teammate Marissa Howard runs in the final of the women's 3,000 steeplechase Friday. She took fourth in her semifinal heat Wednesday.
BOISE STATES NCAA CHAMPIONS
Bill Shaw - Skiing (Slalom) - 1974
Boise State football team - Division I-AA - 1980
Jake Jacoby - Track & Field (High Jump) - 1984
Eugene Green - Track & Field (Triple Jump*) - 1991
Kirk White - Wrestling (165 pounds) - 1999
Gabe Wallin - Track & Field (Javelin) - 2004 & 2005
Ben Cherrington - Wrestling (157 pounds) - 2006
Eleni Kafourou - Track & Field (Long Jump*) - 2009
Kurt Felix - Track & Field (Decathlon) - 2012
Emma Bates - Track & Field (10,000 meters) - 2014
*Indoor track season
Source: Boise State