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The Big Deal of the Week: Kennedy Stenquist, Thunder Ridge HS
Presented by Project Filter, The "Big Deal of the Week" showcases student-athletes from all over Idaho
Published: 1/12/2023 2:30:23 PM
Paul Kingsbury
General Manager/Broadcaster

(photo credit @van.visual)

Kennedy Stenquist has a lot of talents. She plays basketball, golf and soccer, all while maintaining a 4.2 GPA. In her down time she makes a mean smoothie and drains half-court shots for cash. Her friends call her Ken, but we call her The Big Deal of the Week, presented by Project Filter.

Name: Kennedy Stenquist
School: Thunder Ridge High School
Grade: Senior
GPA: 4.2
Sports: Golf, Soccer & Basketball
Basketball Stats: 10ppg, 5rpg, 5apg, 3spg

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m 5 out of 6 kids and I have a twin sister named Carly. I’ve lived in Idaho Falls my whole life. My parents moved to Idaho Falls in 2003 . My older siblings  all played high school sports, but I’m the best athlete in the family for sure, lol. I work at Jamba Juice and this has been my first job. 

Do you have a nickname? If so, how what is it and how did you get it?

Most people call me 'Ken' just cause it’s easy and short. I love it though!

Brag about yourself. What academic and athletic awards have you received so far? 

I’m a member of National Honor Society. I also have maintained a 4.0 GPA my whole high school career and take a lot of pride in my school work.

I have played Varsity basketball since I was a freshman. Last year I was 1st team all-conference, state tournament honorable mention. I also received the Titan Award for our school. This year I was the tournament honorable MVP at the TimberLion Christmas Tournament. 

I hadn't ever played soccer before but I decided to tryout last fall. I made varsity and was able to letter. I played goalie and loved it. It was a new experience and we made it to state for the first time in program history!

I also decided to tryout for golf this fall, without a lot of experience, but was able to letter as well. I shot a 40 over 9 holes. That was the luckiest/ best day ever!

I'm also the best Power Puff QB. :-)

As a student-athlete, which is harder - being a student, or being an athlete? Why?

This year, being a student is harder for me because I decided to take a hard class and have to get up early for it. I wish I hadn't done that, lol. I’m also getting SENIORITIS and it’s kicking my butt. I’m ready to be done with school. Making time for my schoolwork when being in season is really hard for me because I’m so busy and tired.

What is the best thing you have learned from playing sports in high school?

The best thing I’ve learned from playing sports in high school is probably how to be a leader and a good example to everyone . One of the biggest things to me has been to just make my teammates look good and I think that’s where my game is best. Yes, the points and all the stats are nice but at the end of the day I want to be the best teammate and build them up. By playing sports, I have become more vocal and thorough with things. From playing soccer , tennis, and golf I have gotten out of my comfort zone and met new people. The experiences within these sports are what makes it memorable.

Favorite high school memory, so far?

I made a half-court shot against another school during a boys basketball game at half time, winning $5000 for my team. After splitting it I got $1,250!

Who is your favorite teacher...and why?

Mr. Anderson for sure!! He is seriously the nicest guy you’ll ever meet. He really cares for his students on a personal level and wants everyone to succeed. He has been so supportive and helpful in the classroom and when I’m on the court. Any person at our school will say he is the best teacher!

What kind of car gets you around town?

2000 Dodge Durango

Cat person or dog person?

Honestly, I don’t like animals. But, if I had to choose, then a dog person.

You have an entire weekend with no plans. What do you do?

Hang out with my siblings, hot tub, play some pickleball with friends

If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you meet?

If I could meet anyone it would be Haley Jones and Cameron Brink from Stanford Women's Basketball. They are so fun to watch and they seem so cool.

What is something most people do not know about you?

I’m goated at Fortnite.

What celebrity would play you if they made a movie about your life?

Sydney Sweeney

What was the last song you listened to?

Gone Girl, SZA

Any thoughts on post-high school? College offers?

I want to play college basketball!! I have an offer from TVCC and George Fox University. I also am talking to a couple other schools like Snow College and North Idaho College. I’m still just trying to decide what the best fit for me is.

When you "grow up" what is your idea of the perfect job?

My idea of the perfect job would be doing something that I love and enjoy. Having a job right now has made me realize that if I’m gonna be doing something the rest of my life, that I need to love it or else I’m gonna have a hard time wanting to go. I’ve thought of being a radiologist, but I really would love to end up working/doing something involved with college basketball.

What is the best advice you have ever received and from who?

I wouldn’t say this is really 'advice' but more of what I’ve learned from one of my best friends. I’ve always looked up to her and she has taught me that its better to not care and just do your own thing. Life is simple if you let it be. She has had a huge impact on my life, especially with sports. She plays basketball for Montana State but I got to play with her during AAU ball. She has said to me that if I keep working I’ll get to where I want to be and everything will work out. 

This sport has brought so many friendships and that what I love about basketball. It’s a lot more than just a game. I’m forever grateful for her example and the impact she’s had on me.

100 years from now, when your name is mentioned, how do you want to be remembered?

I hope people remember me as someone who was a kind and caring person and that those who I connected with felt valued. That I had a positive impact on my community and groups I was involved with, and that I was a believer in God and his greatness. Oh yeah... and a good basketball player! There’s a lot of life left to live to define who I am or will become in 100 years.

As a leader at your school, what are your thoughts on the vaping epidemic affecting so many schools in Idaho? What advice would you give a friend who might be struggling to quit?

I think access to the product may be too easy. Being an athlete, what I put into my body is super important. I don’t think kids realize the immediate and long term effects. I think for some, the knowledge and information behind a vape isn’t talked about enough. Obviously, being in high school, the pressure is there. People are tempted constantly.

For someone who is struggling to quit, I would say be around different people who don’t use vapes. Get out and do something healthier to replace the addiction. It’s not gonna happen overnight but being persistent and accountable will make a difference.

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