by Bruce Strand, Sports editor
Jordyn Sohns has helped track teams win championships three straight years at Elk River and would like nothing better than to finally make a good run at a basketball title, too, in her fourth and final season.
With help from new, young talent this year, that could happen.
“This is SO exciting,” gushed Sohns about the Elks’ 3-0 start. The rambling 5-foot-9 guard knocked down 55 points, 18.3 per game, as the Elks averaged 78.3 points. Right behind with 54 is freshman Abi Scheid, one of several rookies making an impact, much to Sohns’ delight.
“If we keep playing like we’ve been, we definitely could have a good year,” said Sohns.
About the new talent, she noted, “I did the clock at a couple eighth-grade games last year, and was very impressed, but didn’t expect them to come up here (varsity) … They are exceeding my expectations.”
Sohns played JV and varsity in 9th grade when the Elks went 10-17. She scored 7.9 ppg as a soph on a competitive team (16-12 overall, 11-9 conference). Last year she averaged 7.8 points, 3.7 assists and 2.3 steals on a 7-20 team.
‘This is special, being a senior,” she said. “I was kind of dreading that we might have a bad year.”
A hurdler in track (she went to state last year), Sohns is quick, agile and light on her feet. Her ball handling and shooting are so-so, but her athletic ability and tenacity make her a scoring threat, mostly on drives with an occasional 3-pointer. She rebounds well for a guard. Her defense has improved.
“My defense has been terrible the last two years with lots of fouls,” she acknowledged. “I was concentrating mostly on offense. But I’ve been working on that a lot, and ball handling.”
Coach Reed Caouette looks to Sohns as the veteran to hold things together.
“Jordyn has more of a leadership role this year and we are pleased with what she is doing,” said Caouette. “She wants to be part of a good team, and I think we have that opportunity this year. She works hard in practice every day to get better. She is very coachable. A good kid.”
Sohns accepts the role, allowing that she’s not a bossy type but tries to be an “encourager” and gently help people correct mistakes.
In track, Sohns has been scoring in hurdles (and some relays) since ninth grade, helping the Elks sweep conference, true-team section, and regular section titles three straight years. When they won Section 7AA by two points last season, she won the lone gold in the 100 hurdles, while placing sixth in the 300H. At state she made finals and placed ninth after a PB if 15.29 in prelims.
You may notice a script tattoo on the back of her left shoulder. Jordyn and two older sisters each had a third of a sweet verse of sisterhood done. Jordyn’s says: “A sister is a gift of the heart” while her sibs have “a friend to the spirit” and “a golden thread to the meaning of life.”
Sohns also runs cross country, mostly on JV, to help her endurance for basketball. She hopes to play college basketball.
THE SOHNS SCORECARD
Personal file — Age: 18 … Family: parents, Jeff and Julie; sisters, Jessie, 30, and Jenessa, 21 … Sports: basketball, track, cross country … Academics: ‘B’ average … College plans: undecided where; fitness and nutrition major; basketball, possibly track
Favorite stuff — Class: yearbook, photography … TV show: “Friday Night Lights” and “Duck Dynasty” … Movie: fan of the late Heath Ledger, especially “Casanova” … Music: country, especially Bradley Gilbert … Reading: Nicholas Sparks romance novels … Food: chicken with mashed potatoes … Drink: Dr. Pepper and milk … Team: Celtics … Athletes: Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce … Kickback: snowmobiling, dirt biking … Best place visited: Grant Marais … Wants to visit: Paris