Jenkins shatters triple jump record


Sports editor

Kyle Jenkins is the best triple jumper to ever put on spikes at a Washington high school. There’s no arguing that fact anymore.

The Thomas Jefferson senior popped a state-record leap of 50 feet, 2 inches Saturday afternoon at the prestigious Pasco Invitational Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. The jump shattered the 27-year-old state record set in 1977 by Wilson High School’s Aaron Williams (50-0 3/4) and is the best mark in the United States this track and field season.

“I knew it was going to come sooner or later,” Jenkins said of the state record. “I was feeling pretty good.”

The Pasco jump capped a life-changing week for Jenkins. He signed a national letter of intent to attend Indiana University in the fall on a track scholarship Thursday.

Despite all the success, the defending state champion isn’t satisfied just yet.

“I think I can go further,” he said. “My goal from the start of the year was to go 51 feet.”

The Class 4A State Track and Field Championships might be the perfect place for another record, which happens to be on the same track as Saturday’s Pasco Invitational. Jenkins has had pretty good luck on the runway at Edgar Brown Stadium. He won the state title last year with a Star Track record jump of 49-8 1/2.

“The bigger the meet, the better I seem to do,” Jenkins said. “The competition really brings out the best in me. It just has that special atmosphere.”

Jenkins was just the third Washington athlete to break the 50-foot barrier and the second from Federal Way. Decatur’s Wes Nurse went 50-0 1/2 in 1999 before heading to Boise State University to play defensive back on the Bronco football team.

“It was pretty exciting to watch,” said TJ boys coach Kevin Hanis. “It was a very nice weekend and a real fun time.”

Jenkins wasn’t the only Jefferson athlete at the prestigious meet. The Raiders sent six boys to Pasco and finished up in third place with 32 points behind Oregon’s Benson Tech (39 points) and Spokane’s Mead High School (38).

Senior Coury McGinnis finished second in the 100 meters with a time of 11.33 and fourth in the 200 (22.9) and the Jefferson 4x100 team was sixth in a time of 44.04. Jenkins also finished third in the long jump with a personal-best leap of 23-0. Other Raiders who made the trek east of the mountains were Kyle Anderson (distance), Lionel Orji (400), Philip Bennett (relay) and Chris Fritz (relay).

The Jefferson boys’ team now turns its attention to winning South Puget Sound League South Division dual meets. The Raiders (3-1) host undefeated Spanaway Lake Thursday.

“We still want to win the league,” Jenkins said. “We have some big meets coming up.”

The Pasco Invitational included 1,650 competitors from 118 schools, making it the largest one-day prep meet in the nation. The meet included 33 boys’ teams from Washington and Oregon. Benson Tech (55 points) also won the girls meet over second-place Curtis (40.5).

“I think that was the first time we’ve been there as a team,” Hanis said.

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565,

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