Forrest Bowman is back on the state slopes for the second time in three years.
The junior on the Burnsville boys Alpine team qualified March 3 in the Section 6 meet at Buck Hill in Burnsville, taking fifth overall in his half of the section competition.
Due to COVID-19, Section 6 was split up evenly into two groups. The winning team from both groups made the state field, along with the top-five skiers in both groups not on the advancing squads.
Normally, the top-two teams from Section 6 make state each winter, along with the next 10 individuals not on the two advancing teams.
Burnsville was in the first group of eight teams and finished seventh with 103.5 points. Lakeville South was the winning team (192.5). In the second group, which had nine teams, Edina was the winner (174).
On the girls side, sections were held March 4 at Buck Hill. The Blaze didn't have a state qualifier, but two were in the hunt — senior Paige Peterson and junior Anna Tran.
The Burnsville girls were fifth in the first group out of nine schools with 109 points. Lakeville North won (155), edging Prior Lake by two points. Edina (201) was team winner in the second group of 10 schools.
The Alpine state meet was March 10 at Giants Ridge in Biwabik. Bowman was previously there as a ninth-grader, finishing 55th overall.
At sections, Bowman finished with a combined time of 51.94 on his two runs to qualify.
Burnsville only had thee skiers in the boys competition. Junior Jayden Chow ended up 12th (53.44), missing the final state spot by two places.
Chaska/Chanhassen's Jared Buckley got the final individual berth with a time of 53.15, which was 0.29 faster than Chow.
Sophomore Bruen Drum was 32nd (58.87) for the Blaze.
On the girls side, Peterson ended up 11th overall to lead Burnsville, finishing with a time of 53.75. Tran was 16th (55.78). Peterson was five spots shy of the final state individual spot.
Sophomore Hailey Peterson ended up 23rd (57.95) for the Blaze, followed by senior April Chamberland (25th, 59.02), senior Savanah Drum (33rd, 64.23) and senior Emily Kettler (41st, 79.08).