Fort Osage sophomore Asia Cole and Blue Springs South senior Samantha Nightingale went to the  Missouri Class 4 State Track and Field Championships with different goals.

Fort Osage sophomore Asia Cole and Blue Springs South senior Samantha Nightingale went to the  Missouri Class 4 State Track and Field Championships with different goals.

Yet both walked away with two gold medals hanging around their necks.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” said Cole, who complemented her gold-medal performance in Friday’s shot put with a first-place toss of 143 feet, 5 inches in the discus Saturday afternoon at Lincoln University in Jefferson City -– topping the field by nearly five feet.

“I wanted to win, but all I really wanted to do was come here and compete. I was second in the shot put last year as a freshman, so I did want to win that event. But I didn’t know what to expect in the discus.

“But to win two gold medals is exhilarating. I think I know which sport I’m going to pursue. I’m still going to play volleyball and basketball at Fort Osage, but track is my main sport now.”

Nightingale, who won the 1,600 meters Friday, was bound and determined to “kick some butt” on Saturday.

“I didn’t come here to compete, I came here to kick some butt,” said Nightingale, who won the 3,200 in 10 minutes, 44.96 seconds, which was 27 seconds faster than the second-place finisher. “I wanted to leave it all on the track. I’m a senior, I’m running cross country at Oklahoma State, and this was pretty much it for track.

“I know people think of me as ‘the fast girl’ in cross country and I want them to think of me as ‘the fast girl’ in the 1,600 and 3,200.”

Both girls are on the fast track to future success – Cole for two more years at Fort Osage and Nightingale at one of the top college cross country programs in the nation.

“I’m really eager for Sam to get to OSU where she will have some great competition,” South coach Ryan Unruh said. “She basically ran against herself today. It’s going to be fun to see what she does with some great coaching and competition.”

Fort Osage coach J.D. Snead said the sky’s the limit for Cole.

“She has the perfect temperament for her sport,” Snead said. “She doesn’t let anything rattle her and she’s going to keep getting better and better. I know she’s excited about what happened this weekend.”

The two first-place medals for Cole and Nightingale helped the Indians and Jaguars finish in a 12th-place tie in the team competition with 20 points. Francis Howell was first with 48 points followed by Lee’s Summit West with 47. Lee’s Summit North was seventh with 34 points and Blue Springs rounded out the top 10 with 33 points, good for an eighth-place finish.

Remy Abrought, who battled former teammate and two-time state champion Madison Smith in the 100 hurdles in previous years, claimed her own gold medal by winning that event Saturday afternoon in a time of 14.24.

“I was nervous at first, because now I’m a senior and this was my last shot at winning a gold medal,” Abrought said. “This just feels so good. I’ve wanted to stand on the top step of that podium for a long time.

Abrought will run the hurdles at Southern Illinois this fall.

n Wildcats senior Megan Wright was second in the pole vault for the second year in a row. Both years she lost to West’s Brittany Kallenberger, who set a state record with a jump of 12-1. Wright finished at 12-0.

“I’m disappointed with my height, but not my finish,” Wright said. “I’d like to have jumped higher since this is my last state meet, but I’m proud to have finished second each of the last two years.”

Another Wildcat who was pleased with taking home three medals, but not pleased with her personal performance was freshman sprint sensation Gabby Hall.

“I learned there are a lot of fast girls at state,” said Hall, who was seventh in the 200 and was part of the fourth-place 400 and eighth-place 800 relay teams. “The talent here was different than the little meets I’ve been running. This meet psyched me up and lets me know I have to train and work harder.”

Tyonna Snow, the only athlete in Blue Springs history to appear in four state championship games in basketball, went out for track her senior year as a special gift to her mom.

“I did this for my mom,” said Snow, who was fifth in the long jump and part of the fourth- and eighth-place 800 and 400 relay teams.

“I’m glad I went out for track. Basketball is still my main sport, but with the success I had today, I have to wonder what I might have done had I gone out before my senior year.”

n William Chrisman junior Nieka Wheeler has three new best friends – the trio of freshman she teamed with to smoke the Bears’ school record in the 400 relay (48.8).

“I love my freshmen,” said Wheeler – referring to Crystal Cook, Kyana Mason and De’Jionae Calloway – who led the Bears to a third-place finish in the event.

“We wanted to prove that we were better than being put in the eighth lane. We were on a mission. Today, we beat our own school record for the fourth time this season and we’re going to work hard so we can come back to state next year and win it.”

Wheeler also won an individual medal, finishing seventh in the long jump.

“I scratched three times, so I know I could have done a lot better,” Wheeler said. “I’m a junior and I’ll be back next year.”

n Truman’s Sara Ruckman is a senior, and she finally claimed that elusive all-state medal by finishing in third place in the 800.

“The past three years I’ve been to state and I haven’t medaled,” Ruckman said, “so this is awesome. I really thought I had the chance to come to state and win the 800, but it was so hot and my legs were dead at the end. I’m happy I was able to hold onto third place.”

n Grain Valley’s Mariah Hernandez was a hit in the high jump, leaping 5-6 to claim the Class 3 second-place medal.

“I’m excited because I’ve been to state twice and this is my first medal,” Hernandez said.