The two-day meet, at the Mt. Hood Community College Aquatic Center, featured Hermiston and Pendleton’s best — including a combined four relay teams and eight individual qualifiers.
Hermiston’s Ryan Barnard and Carson Wrathall made up its relay teams and would also try for a spot in the finals in two individual events each.
Barnard’s chances at top finish were kept alive after narrowly making the cut in the boys 200-yard individual medley.
He was the sixth and final automatic qualifier after edging out the seventh place finisher by just 00.42 seconds. Barnard clocked 2:03.12, shaving nearly two whole seconds off his district championship time.
In his second event, the 100-yard butterfly, Barnard finished in eighth place to get one of two alternate spots with his time of 55.49.
Wrathall will join Barnard in the finals Saturday after swimming the 100-yard freestyle in 49.68. His sub-50 seconds was good for fourth place.
In Wrathall’s other event, the 100-yard breaststroke, his time of 1:03.00 wasn’t good enough to make it into the top six of his heat. But once all 12 swimmers finished, he landed in seventh place to get be the first alternate in Saturday’s final heat.
Another Bulldog swam in an individual event Friday. Rian Middleton finished sixth in the para-athlete finals of the mixed 50-yard freestyle (1:10.57).
Hermiston’s two relay teams, the boys 200-yard medley and 200-yard freestyle, fell outside of the top six and were unable to make it on time. The medley relay finished in 10th place (1:49.26) and the freestyle relay team placed ninth (1:36.64).
On the final day of competition, Barnard and Wrathall each swam for a title in the 200-yard individual medley (IM) and the 100-yard freestyle, respectively.
Neither, however, were able to crack the top three but did land a spot on the podium.
Barnard finished sixth in the IM after clocking 2:03.96. He was in third place after the first lap, but after the turn began falling behind.
Wrathall was close to cracking the top three in the 100-yard free, but finished fourth in 50.21. He was the last swimmer to finish sub-50 seconds.