Throwback Thursday: It is no accident the Aslesen kids are good at basketball

From left to right: Sam Aslesen plays for Allan Bertram’s 16-U East River, Sacred Hoops squad. The Aslesen family and oldest sibling, Elsie Aslesen who played on Concordia’s National Championship basketball team in 2018/2019.

By Rich Winter

The first person I visited with in Sioux Falls over the weekend was Janna (Austin) Aslesen. Was watching Coach Bertram’s East-River 16-U team…Sam Aslesen scored a bucket and Janna gave an extra clap so figured out Sam was her boy.

And then we watched the entire game with Janna Aslesen commenting on the various players. After listening to Sam Aslesen’s mom talk about each of the players on the roster, breaking down their games, telling me particular traits and strengths of each players….Somewhere in there I just knew this lady had coached or played basketball somewhere.

After watching the game and hearing that Mrs. Aslesen had a daughter, Elsie Aslesen (EPJ) who played on Concordia’s National Championship SQUAD this year, the truth finally came out, after meeting Janna’s husband, Travis Aslesen.

“You do know she’s a two-time All-American at the University of Sioux Falls,” Travis said. “When she left college in 1996, she was the school’s All-Time Leading Scorer.”

Hmmmm, interesting, prompting me to dig just a little bit.

The former Janna Austin is still on the Class B single-game scoring records list as she pumped in 43 points during a game in 1991….(Interesting Caveat here as a few years later (1994) he school scoring record was broken by Bobbi Sichmeller, Centerville who had 44 in game).

That’s just getting started.

From 1992-1996 Austin scored 1,930 points while playing for the University of Sioux Falls. When she left school she was the all-time leading scorer…That mark has since been eclipsed by Courtney Farrell (2002-2005, 2433.

Janna and Travis (Also a basketball player for the University of Sioux Falls) met in college and have three children….The family moved to Howard this summer where Travis will be the Principal.

Sam Aslesen will be a top South Dakota prospect in the graduating class of 2021

Sam Aslesen at left with Ryan Oetken. Pictured at right is the Sacred Hoops squad that captured the tournament title in Omaha.

Was able to watch Sam Aslesen throughout the tournament. He’s right at 6-foot-5 with another couple of inches likely in the works. Guard skills, great handles and already has a quality 3-point shot.

Patient: Don’t think I saw Sam take a bad shot the entire tournament. Patient in the post, Aslesen will score over bigger people, and if it’s not there, he’ll kick it out and reset. Total package already as this man can put it on the floor, get past people, or pull up for the lost art of the mid-range jumper.

Quality prospect, terrific family!