Katie Jenkins has a knack for showing up when the lights shine brightest. The Bow High School swimmer didn’t necessarily blow the competition out of the water during the regular season, but Falcons assistant swim Coach Joanne Jackson knew when the time came, Jenkins would be ready.
“You know she always performs when it’s needed the most so she always has a really strong state meet,” Jackson said of Jenkins, who set two new school records at the Division II Swimming & Diving championships this season and led the Bow girls to a seventh-place finish. “Sometimes she gets down on herself during the season because her times aren’t as good, but somehow she always pulls it out when it’s most needed.”
The records Jenkins broke were her own. She made it on the podium in the 100-yard butterfly, finishing third in 59.13 seconds and continued to leave her mark in the Bow record books by placing fourth in the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:01.79. Jenkins was also a part of the Falcons’ 200 free relay team, which along with teammates Amanda Sampo, Riley Hicks and Sonya DeLorie, nearly passed St. Thomas Aquinas and Coe-Brown for third before settling for fifth in 1:48.12.
“When she pulled out the third place for butterfly, having the time that was more than I thought she was going to swim, I was really happy,” Jackson said. “Then she went and did the same thing in backstroke. I think she was seeded way lower and she ended up scoring and just had a really great time. It was really more than I expected.
“She broke her own record with those,” Jackson said. “But still, when she broke the record originally, they were like eight, 10-year-old records.”
Jenkins, a junior who is dedicated to the sport, competes year round for the Manchester Swim Team and is hoping to continue her career in the pool at the college level, is far from done checking things off her list for Bow. With another full offseason ahead to get ready for next year, Jackson said there are a few more records Jenkins is looking to take down.
“She would love to swim in school and next year she’ll be looking to get her times down a little more,” Jackson said. “There are two more school records (50 free and 200 free) that she’s eyeing that she would love to be able to break before she leaves.”