GLASGOW -- Westby-Grenora senior Jenna Rust is an absolute animal on the basketball floor.
The 6-foot senior is a walking double-double and fiery competitor. But that persona is quite different from the one she has when she’s outside the lines.
“She’s the kind of kid that you’ll see walking around the whole stadium here before the game starts talking to everybody, chatting it up," Westby-Grenora head coach Dylan MacLean said. "We’ll get out there and she’s ready to compete and ready to give everything she has for her teammates and for her team, for the community. She’s really driven to help us get to where we want to go.”
“When you get out there on the basketball court, you’ve got to be aggressive," Rust said. "You’ve got to flip the switch somehow and kind of take up space.”
Rust’s gentle demeanor off the floor is perfectly portrayed in the relationship she’s built with her horse Garth and her show horse Maybe.
“I got my first horse from a neighbor. Got it for free, broke her, started from there. Got a new show horse and went to a couple shows. Barrel racing some, so just kind of dabbled in everything," said Rust.
But once she heads off to college, that time with her horses will come to an end, at least for now.
“It’s kind of the end of it until I can get settled back down later in life," Rust said. "It’s kind of like my therapy. Go from basketball where you’ve got to work hard and it’s a little stressful at times, then you’ve got school that’s a little stressful, then you go out there and everything just goes away.”
Just as she tried a little bit of everything with her horses, she’s done the same with her free time. She even took over her older brother’s lawn mowing business, which she’ll claim she does a better job of.
“It’s just kind of funny. She’s kind of a jack of all trades. She does everything. She’s always doing something." MacLean said. "Whether it’s horses, whether it’s mowing lawns, she has to always be doing something. Sometimes as her basketball coach you want her to reign it in a little bit during the season, but that’s just Jenna. She’s a one of a kind, really.”
As her coach put it, Rust is a jack of all trades away from the hardwood. She’s not too bad on the floor, either.
Westby-Grenora fell to Ekalaka in the opening round of the State C girls basketball tournament in Missoula. The Thunder will play Manhattan Christian on Friday in loser-out action.