Around 2 minutes. That’s how much older Jack Hastreiter is than his twin brother, Sam.
The Lincoln Pius X brothers have since grown to 6-foot-7 — Sam is around 205 pounds while Jack is about 195 — and turned themselves into two of Lincoln’s top high school basketball players.
Living under the same roof has helped their games improve, too. To say there’s been a lot of one-on-ones on the cement court at their house would be an understatement.
“It depends on the day,” Jack said with a laugh when asked who usually wins those battles. “Some days it’ll be really close, and others there will be blowouts. There’s usually not a clear winner. Whoever loses usually wants a rematch.”
The brothers share similarities off of the court, which one would expect for twins. They go almost everywhere together. They’re big fans of Chipotle. They listen to the same music — both like J. Cole. Sam admits Jack is the better driver, but Sam is the “way better” golfer.
“We enjoy the same things,” Jack said. “I mean, we have two cars but we only use one of them because we just go to the same places and have the same interests, so we’re obviously together a lot. We’re either at home chilling and watching movies, or working out together and lifting together.”
During these summer weekends, though, they’re playing with different teams. They play travel AAU basketball — Sam with Nebraska Supreme 17U; Jack with Lincoln Supreme National 1.
Sometimes the brothers are playing in the same building. Other times it’s different cities and states. The Hastreiter’s dad, Ben, usually goes to the games that are further away. His mom, Charity, would rather stay closer to home and is no stranger to the Kansas City drive.
Though the teams they play for are different, one routine remains the same — the Monday chats when they catch up about each other’s weekend.
“When we get back we like to talk about the funny things that happen with our own teams, or crazy things that happen during the games or who we saw,” Sam said.
Sam’s summer has been a strong one with Nebraska Supreme 17U, he said. Supreme is a combined 10-2 in the Under Armour Association’s two live sessions, which have been in Cartersville, Georgia and Frisco, Texas, respectively. Supreme has played some of the best AAU teams in the country, and beaten them.
“It’s been going awesome so far,” Sam said. “It’s been nice getting closer to my teammates. I’ve been playing against them for a long time, and now we’re on the same team and I’m learning from them.
“And it’s been great because of how well we’re doing. We’re kids from Nebraska and it’s really cool to be able to compete and do well against all these other big teams.”
Sam has owned an offer from Idaho since September 2020. He’s seen interest from North Dakota State, Nebraska-Omaha, Air Force, Lipscomb University, Kennesaw State University, Lehigh University, South Dakota and Incarnate Word.
Supreme 17U has two of the state’s top players — forwards Isaac Traudt from Grand Island and Millard North’s Jasen Green — on its roster, as well as one of the top guard prospects in Omaha Central’s Jay Dawson. Those are three excellent scoring options who will play at the next level.
There’s only one ball, though. That means Hastreiter needs to make an impact elsewhere on the court. And that’s OK with him.
“My role on this team is different than the one I’ll have on my high school team, and I’ve accepted that,” Sam said. “I know I’m not one of the best scorers on the team, because some of those other guys are so talented. But I can impact the game in other ways like rebounding and defense.
“If I have an open shot or there’s something open, I’ll definitely try to take advantage of that,” he added, “but I want to help out in other ways, too.”
While he may not be considered one of the top scorers on his AAU team, Hastreiter is a big body capable of guarding multiple positions while also being able to knock down shots behind the arc — all valuable to a winning team. As a junior for Pius X, he averaged 9.3 points and five boards while shooting 41 percent (23-of-56) from 3.
This summer has given Sam an opportunity to work on his game against the country’s top high school talent. That will help mold his overall game into more of a polished product.
“It forces me to focus on other things, like defense and rebounding, which are important but not talked,” Sam said. “I think this will really improve my game because I’ll get shots during the high school season, so it’s nice to get that other perspective and learn from these high-caliber players like Isaac and Jasen.”
That’s good news for Pius X, which will have big and long options in 2021-22 with the two 6-7 Hastreiters, the 6-8 Treyson Anderson and the 6-6 Brady Christiansen, who was offered by Nebraska-Kearney and Washburn University on Tuesday on top of previous offers from Concordia University, Doane University and Wayne State College.
The same goes for Jack. It’s been a productive summer of getting his name out to college coaches. On Tuesday, he was offered by Washburn University.
— Jack Hastreiter (@jack_hastreiter) July 20, 2021
As one of the top players on Lincoln Supreme National 1, Jack has plenty of opportunities to showcase what he can do with the ball in his hands.
That wasn’t the case last season at Pius X, a team that had a strong core of seniors who played in front of him. Jack averaged just 4.1 points and 1.5 rebounds per game in limited varsity action.
“This AAU season I feel like I’ve really broke out of my shell and I’m showing what I can do and what I’ve been working on, and it’s gotten recognition which is nice,” Jack said.
He’s been working on his offensive versatility, being a strong post presence while also stretching the defense with his 3-point shot, something he hit 35 percent (7-of-20) of the time last season.
“I’ve been working on everything in between, too, whether that’s driving, shooting, pull-ups,” Jack said. “And rebounding, I’ve been working on that a lot lately.”
That recognition Jack mentioned may have been his UNK offer in April. He’s also gotten interest from Fort Hays State and Wayne State College.
“I was really excited for him because he’s been working really hard, and in my opinion has been underrated for a while,” Sam said of his brother earning the UNK offer. “He’s finally getting that recognition. We share the same dream of playing college basketball, and for him to be finally getting noticed, it’s awesome.”
The brothers are basketball junkies and have keeping an eye on the NBA Finals. Game Six is tonight, with the Giannis Antetokounmpo-led Milwaukee Bucks hosting Devin Booker, Chris Paul and the Phoenix Suns. Milwaukee holds a 3-2 lead in the series and is one win away from a championship.
Who are the Hastreiters rooting for?
“Bucks, for sure. Love Giannis,” Jack said.
“I’d like to see the Bucks get this one,” Sam added. “They were supposed to be really good the past few years, and I feel like if they don’t win it this year, it’s not going to happen. As much as I do want Chris Paul to get a ring, I’m going for the Bucks.”
The basketball never stops under the Hastreiter’s roof.