Stensgard brothers buoy Simley basketball with scoring and more

  • Article by: AARON PAITICH , Special to the Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 18, 2014 - 5:22 PM

Jack and Sam Stensgard, the team’s leading scorers, bring a strong work ethic to the improving Spartans.

Sam Stensgard

Photo: submitted photo, DML -

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

 

Mark Stensgard put a hoop in his family’s basement when his sons, Jack and Sam, were just youngsters. It’s a nine-foot hoop with sport-court tiles on the floor.

“That’s when we did all of our fun stuff,” said Jack, now a Simley sophomore. “He’d rebound for us. He always wanted to see us improve and see us get better.”

But it wasn’t always smiles and laughter.

“Not only did we get to shoot every day, but we had a lot of battles when we were younger,” said Sam, a junior for the Spartans. “Especially when we were younger, people would cry. It’s gotten a lot more mature now, but it’s always been fun.”

Mark coached Jack and Sam beginning in kindergarten. He continued through traveling basketball and still helps out during the offseason for the varsity program.

Both Mark and his wife Lynette attend almost every game and provide advice when needed. Mark played college ball for Winona State, Lynette played for Lake Superior State.

“Yeah, we kind of brainwashed them early to play basketball,” Mark said. “Obviously they loved playing anyway, so it was pretty easy.”

It appears to be paying dividends for Simley, which is off to its best start in 15 years. The Spartans began the season 5-0. After Tuesday’s victory over South St. Paul, Simley was 11-3.

The Stensgards are leading the Spartans in scoring. Sam is averaging 15.6 points per game, Jack 14.3.

Coach Ben Bushaw said the siblings “have played together so long that they know each others’ games well and seem to know where each will be on the floor. They have great overall basketball skills and understanding of the game.

“They are doing a great job this season of leading us in scoring, decision-making and team play. They are the players they are today because of the great work ethic they both possess.”

Jack’s special on threes

Jack is the three-point threat. Growing up, he was always smaller, so he didn’t attack the net too often. It forced him to develop strong long-range shooting. Bushaw has challenged him to work on his shot from even farther out.

“Now, if he takes a few steps over the half line and he is open, he lets it fly,” Bushaw said. “Last season, Jack made 10 three-point shots in one game. Our coaching staff calls Jack’s three-point shot a layup.”

If Jack is hot with the three-pointer, it opens up many other options for Simley to execute offensively.

Sam has a stronger midrange game, which complements his brother well. He can drive, pull up, and shoot from the outside as well.

“It’s a lot of fun because we both know what we can do,” Jack said. “He wants to get me open and I want to get him open. We both want each other to score and have good games. When we both are scoring, we usually win.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New Orleans 28 FINAL
Carolina 10
Tampa Bay 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Arizona 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Dallas
Philadelphia 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Houston
NY Jets 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Jacksonville 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
San Diego 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Washington 11/2/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
St. Louis 11/2/14 3:05 PM
San Francisco
Denver 11/2/14 3:25 PM
New England
Oakland 11/2/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Baltimore 11/2/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Indianapolis 11/3/14 7:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 105 FINAL
Orlando 98
Detroit 91 FINAL
Minnesota 97
New York 95 FINAL
Cleveland 90
Utah 102 FINAL
Dallas 120
Oklahoma City 90 FINAL
LA Clippers 93
Boston 3 FINAL(OT)
Buffalo 2
Winnipeg 1 FINAL(SO)
New Jersey 2
Los Angeles 0 FINAL
Pittsburgh 3
Chicago 5 FINAL(SO)
Ottawa 4
Philadelphia 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay 4
Arizona 1 FINAL
Florida 2
San Jose 3 FINAL(SO)
Minnesota 4
Anaheim 0 FINAL
St. Louis 2
NY Islanders 0 FINAL
Colorado 5
Montreal 2 FINAL(OT)
Vancouver 3
(2) Florida State 42 FINAL
Louisville 31
Troy 10 FINAL
Ga Southern 42
Cincinnati 7:00 PM
Tulane
Tulsa 7:02 PM
Memphis
Air Force 11/1/14 10:30 AM
Army
ULM 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Texas A&M
(19) Oklahoma 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
Northwestern 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Iowa
(24) Duke 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Maryland 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Wisconsin 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
Rice 11/1/14 11:00 AM
FIU
(21) East Carolina 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Temple
UCF 11/1/14 11:00 AM
Connecticut
Boston College 11/1/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
North Carolina 11/1/14 11:30 AM
Miami-Florida
Washington 11/1/14 12:00 PM
Colorado
Central Mich 11/1/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Western Mich 11/1/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Western Ky 11/1/14 2:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
NC State 11/1/14 2:00 PM
Syracuse
Virginia 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Georgia Tech
Purdue 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(17) Nebraska
BYU 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Middle Tennessee
(10) TCU 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(20) West Virginia
Indiana 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 11/1/14 2:30 PM
(9) Georgia
Georgia State 11/1/14 2:30 PM
Appalachian St
Kentucky 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Kansas 11/1/14 3:00 PM
(12) Baylor
Texas State 11/1/14 3:00 PM
New Mexico St
Houston 11/1/14 3:00 PM
So Florida
USC 11/1/14 3:30 PM
Washington St
Arkansas State 11/1/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
South Alabama 11/1/14 4:00 PM
Louisiana
New Mexico 11/1/14 4:30 PM
UNLV
UAB 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
(4) Auburn 11/1/14 6:00 PM
(7) Ole Miss
Old Dominion 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Colorado State 11/1/14 6:00 PM
San Jose St
Arkansas 11/1/14 6:15 PM
(1) Miss State
Stanford 11/1/14 6:30 PM
(5) Oregon
Tennessee 11/1/14 6:30 PM
So Carolina
Texas 11/1/14 6:30 PM
Texas Tech
Southern Miss 11/1/14 7:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
(6) Notre Dame 11/1/14 7:00 PM
Navy
Oklahoma State 11/1/14 7:00 PM
(11) Kansas State
Illinois 11/1/14 7:00 PM
(13) Ohio State
(14) Arizona 11/1/14 9:30 PM
(25) UCLA
California 11/1/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
San Diego St 11/1/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Wyoming 11/1/14 9:45 PM
Fresno State
(18) Utah 11/1/14 10:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Utah State 11/1/14 10:00 PM
Hawaii
Bowling Green 11/4/14 7:00 PM
Akron
Toledo 11/4/14 7:00 PM
Kent State
Buffalo 11/5/14 7:00 PM
Ohio U
Northern Ill 11/5/14 7:00 PM
Ball State
(22) Clemson 11/6/14 6:30 PM
Wake Forest
Sporting Kansas City 1 FINAL
Red Bull New York 2
Hamilton 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Winnipeg 11/1/14 3:00 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 11/1/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Toronto 11/2/14 11:00 AM
Montreal
Ottawa 11/7/14 6:00 PM
Toronto
Calgary 11/7/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Montreal 11/8/14 3:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 11/8/14 6:00 PM
Saskatchewan

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How many games will the Timberwolves win this season?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close