LEXINGTON — Fort Campbell’s Damian Bowe missed his high school graduation Friday to compete in the KHSAA Class 2A State Track & Field Championship, but Mother Nature had other plans at the University of Kentucky.
Bowe competed in the 110-meter hurdles Friday, which was one of only a few events that were completed before the meet was postponed to Saturday.
Despite all this, Bowe was quick to respond when asked if it was all worth it, mostly because of the fun he and the other competitors had during the weather delay.
“It was definitely worth it,” he said. “The meet got canceled so we played in the rain for a long time, made some memories.”
Videos emerged on Twitter during the delay of athletes running through mud pits and having fun during what usually would be a tense situation in between events.
Bowe finished second in his first race of the day with a time of 15.06.
“For the 110 specifically, I was happy with the way that I placed, but I wasn’t happy with the time,” he said. “But I had to take into consideration that it was raining and the wind was blowing right as soon as we started running.”
With his high school career over, Bowe is still going to remember the state meet, just not what he did on the track.
“Of course I’m going to remember the close races, the tough races,” he said. “I’m going to remember the celebrations, but I am really going to remember playing in the water, that was crazy. If you could see the videos, we were dancing around. The meet got canceled and we made the most of it.”
Bowe finished sixth in the 300-meter hurdles Friday with a time of 40.67 to finish with two podium finishes in his final year as a Falcon.
Fellow Falcon Jahlyn Mincey finished sixth in the girls’ 100-meter dash with a time of 12.81. Mincey a freshman, finishes 16th in the 200-meter dash.
Jumper Austin Keeling finished third in the triple jump with a distance of 44-06, but his day started with a fourth place finish in the high jump.
“I’m pretty pleased,” he said. “I didn’t quite finish how I wanted, but I hurt my ankle down the stretch and still managed a pretty good time down the stretch. I didn’t have any clean jumps and I was still able to post a 44-06 so I’m pretty pleased with how I was able to do with all of the setbacks.”
Keeling has had a very successful career as a Falcon with one more year to go.
Looking back at Saturday, he said he’d do most everything the same.
“I wouldn’t do much different,” he said. “If anything I’d probably just focus on a better mark. I was a little off on the runway. I couldn’t quite hit the board the way I wanted to. In all, I’d just focus on preparation.”
With a year left at Fort Campbell, Keeling said he has a lot to build on.
“This season places me in great position to hit some pretty solid marks of 47-48 feet next year. I can definitely focus on becoming more explosive and holding my phases more. As of next year, this performance honestly just fuels me to hit some big marks near 50. Just to push hard and get somewhat faster and stronger.”
Trigg County also competed Saturday with freshman DeDe Barbee finishing 12th in the 400-meter dash. The Wildcats also took 12th in the boys’ 4x100-meter dash.
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