Bristow Squared

Bristow+Squared

Meghan Helton, Copy Editor

“Bristow.” This name became known throughout the halls of Rider after Jalynn Bristow led Lady Raiders basketball all the way to the regional tournament last year. Now the name has been reintroduced with Jalynn’s younger brother, Keitenn Bristow.

Keitenn is kicking off his freshman year as a starting guard on Rider’s varsity basketball team. He doesn’t have to look very far for support, either. 

“I’ve kind of been waiting for this,” Jalynn said. “When he made varsity and we found out, I was just so happy and I was so proud of him.”

Coach Cliff McGuire has had a few freshmen starters in his time at Rider, namely T.J. Vasher and Ty Caswell. While it’s not uncommon, it takes a mature individual to handle the expectations. 

“He’s really given us an extra shooting threat and came in with a lot of confidence,” McGuire said. “With freshmen in basketball, if you’re good you can start.”

With Jalynn reeling in recruitment offers from across the country, one might assume that there would be tremendous pressure on Keitenn’s shoulders. However, this is not the case.

In fact it is quite the opposite, as the two share a tight sibling bond.

“My brother and I are really close and we hang around each other all the time,” Jalynn said. “We’re just always together. It was never a jealousy thing, because we support each other. He’s always at my games and we’re always cheering and loud for him at his games.”

Off the court, the siblings also share a mutual competitiveness, which Keitenn insists his sister instigates.

“Yes, a lot of the time it’s her that starts it,” Keitenn said. “She just makes everything a competition, so that’s what I have to do as well.”

When it comes to discussing basketball, Jalynn and Keitenn will often share strategies and pointers with each other.

“He’s always played guard and he can help me with some things like, ‘OK, you need to keep your feet straight when you’re shooting at three,’” Jalynn said. “And I will tell him ‘When you drive on a fast break, you need to do this.’ It’s a win, win situation for both of us.”

When Keitenn needs even more help, however, he will turn to his mother.

Kat Bristow, the siblings’ mom, played basketball for Midwestern State and several travel teams during her college years. She also coached the pair when they were younger.

“If I ever need to go to someone for help, I’ll go to my mom,” Keitenn said. 

While Jalynn is leading the highly ranked Lady Raiders toward a district title, Keitenn and the boys team is fighting for a playoff spot. Their journeys may be different, but they have each other to help along the way.