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Athlete of the Week: Iola-Scandinavia’s Justin Sivertson

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In small town USA you don't have to look much further than high school sports to find heroes.

Iola-Scandinavia is no different.

"I have 5 year old at home," said Sam Bertsch Iola-Scandinavia's varsity basketball coach. "Number 10, he knows who that is."

Dawning that number 10 is Justin Sivertson, who at one point, was that five year old.

"I remember when I was in elementary school, I looked up to those athletes," recalled Sivertson.

"When he was a 5'5" guard coming up there were kids that he was looking up to," echoed Bertsch. "(There were) Kids that he would look up to in elementary school. You know just seeing positive role models."

Those role models helped mold Sivertson into who he is today.

"It helped me know how to treat (the kids)," said Sivertson. "You know it's always good to give them a high five. Because I remember when I got a high five from those guys it felt really good."

Now in his senior season, as he leads the undefeated Thunderbirds team in points per game, Sivertson has become the one inspiring the next generation.

"He is now that guy," said Bertsch. "(He's) just a positive influence. You see kids in the stands, they want to be like that Justin Sivertson. It's really neat to see."

Which means the world to the kid that grew up to be the heroes he watched.

"It does it feels awesome," said Sivertson. The fact they look up to us is really cool. It's a good feeling."

Alex Stewart

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