Riggs picks up a pair of medals at state

WILDCATS IN ACTION — Wright City junior Zoe Riggs, right, races with Nicolette Sansone of St. Pius X of Kansas City in the 800-meter run at the Class 3 state meet on May 29 at Adkins Stadium in Jefferson City. Riggs finished fourth in the 800 and second in the 1,600.
Theo Tate
Staff Writer

Zoe Riggs’ first trip to the Class 3 state track meet on May 29 was a memorable one.

The Wright City junior left Adkins Stadium in Jefferson City with a pair of all-state medals after finishing second in the 1,600 with a time of 5:18.34 and fourth in the 800 with a 2:23.42. She was the school’s first girls track athlete to earn all-state honors since 2014, when Brittany McPike placed seventh in the discus.

“I’m just so honored,” Riggs said. “God is so good. I fought through a lot. I know that I was super worried about sectionals. I didn’t know if I could make it. I had an injury in the middle of the season. I didn’t know if I could finish the season. But (Wright City) coach (Billy Garrett) was so smart and kept encouraging me. I kept training and doing what I could. I just wanted to fight for state and place at state.”

Riggs was also happy that her younger sister, Elizabeth, competed at state. Elizabeth, a freshman, placed 10th in 48.65 seconds in the 300-meter hurdles.

“It’s really great,” Zoe said. “I’m trying to encourage her to practice more. Track is not much of her sport, so she doesn’t put too much into it. But she could do it because she has so much potential. She could be better than me in so many things.”

Zoe Riggs came within a whisker of becoming the first Wright City athlete in 13 years to win a state title after her performance in the 1,600. She finished second by six-hundredths of a second to Osage’s Sara Wolf. She was in fifth place after the first three laps.

“I gave it my all,” said Zoe, who came into the race seeded second. “I did what I could do, but I’m happy for her. She definitely deserved it. I have another year to hopefully get it.”

In the 800, Zoe was in 12th place after the first lap before coming back to get all-state honors in the race. She was the No. 5 seed in the event.

Zoe qualified for Jefferson City by placing second in the 1,600 and third in the 800 at the Class 3 sectional meet on May 22 at Montgomery County High School.

At state, Zoe set personal marks in both the 800 and 1,600. She dedicated her performance to Garrett, who worked his last meet as Wright City coach.

“He’s always the best,” said Zoe, who wrapped up her first year with the Wright City track team. “He has goals for me and I have goals. But he’s always there to congratulate me and give me a big hug and be thankful for what I do get.”

Zoe also earned all-state honors in her second sport. She placed 17th at the Class 3 state cross country meet at Columbia in November.

Elizabeth said she was pleased that her older sister got a pair of medals at the state track meet.

“I’m proud of her,” she said. “I wish it was me, too.”

Elizabeth enjoyed a strong season in the 300-meter hurdles that included a pair of second-place finishes at the Bowling Green and the District 3 meets and a third-place finish at sectionals that clinched her a berth to Jefferson City. The freshman started competing in the event in early April.

“I’m glad I tried them,” Elizabeth said. “Hopefully, I’ll do better next year.”

The Riggs sisters were the lone Wright City representatives at the state meet.


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