As the first day of the NSAA State Track and Field Championships finished under the Omaha Burke Stadium lights Friday, Ethan Rowe and Madyson Ray were up away from the dark track near where results are posted at the top of the stands.

They couldn't find their 300-meter hurdle times.

When they finally discovered them on a laptop screen in the press box, Ray found that she'd just, barely, missed out on making BHS' top 10 list in her event.

Rowe, meanwhile, found out what he'd expected — he hadn't met his own standards.

“At least I'm here,” the senior said.

The senior hurdler also appeared in the final athletic event of state festivities — the 1,600-meter relay, which was the sole event to take place after a lightning delay Saturday evening.

But like with the rest of the weekend, the Bears came up short of a medal. Despite 15 state qualifiers, Blair left Burke without a top-eight finisher.

Former state medalist Ally Garner — one of four Bear seniors who competed in Omaha, including two-event qualifier Ali Blum — and her 1,600 relay team fell short, but the experienced sprinter could see the bright side.

“It's bittersweet,” she said after her last race. “It's a nice thought, 'I never have to run a 400 ever again,' but I'm going to miss it even with how much I hate it sometimes.”

Evan Slominski, meanwhile, just tried to enjoy his final high school meet.

“The weather is better than expected,” he said well before running the boys' 1,600 relay through puddles. “Much better.”

The Dakota State recruit first qualified for the state meet as a freshman pole vaulter, which had his nerves on edge.

“Now, I'm enjoying it,” Slominski said. “Just trying to compete and do my best.”

Out of anyone on the BHS squad, he was the closest to medal, finishing ninth in the high jump. The multiple-sport athlete cleared 6 feet, 2 inches.

Adam Brehm finished 10th in the 400-meter dash, while Tristan Jacobsen was 10th in the long jump. Jacobsen, a junior, leapt 20 feet, 7.75 inches.

“It's just a normal meet,” he said, revealing his state mindset. “You've just got to do your best and go for it.”

Despite their efforts, the Bears couldn't quite score a team point. That's not to say the future isn't bright, though. Eleven non-BHS-seniors made their way to Burke on Friday and Saturday.

“I'm excited to see what they do,” Garner said, talking about, in particular, her relay teammates — Mary Roskens, Makayla Baughman and Lillian Knudtson. “I can definitely tell with some extra training, they have quite a bit of potential. They're all good runners and really great people and I'm excited to come back and watch them next year.”

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