Last winter, Katie Olson went to St. Bede Academy to watch the rivalry boys basketball game between the Bruins and La Salle-Peru.
She was wearing L-P gear, but during the sophomore game, she was rooting for a player on St. Bede — her younger brother, Jarret.
Katie and Jarret Olson are in a unique situation of attending rival schools, and while they’re loyal to their school, they put family first.
“Between my brother and I, there’s always support there,” said Katie, a senior at L-P. “He comes to L-P and cheers for me. Last year at the L-P vs. St. Bede basketball game, I was there and dressed in L-P, but behind everything you always want your brother to do well, so I was cheering for him.
“L-P people probably didn’t like it,” she added with a laugh.
While the siblings joke about their school’s teams beating the other’s, Jarret agreed that it’s family first.
“When it comes down to it, we both cheer for our family over our school,” Jarret said.
With each playing a varsity sport in the fall as well as school and club sports throughout the winter and spring, it’s tough for the siblings to watch each other play, but they try to carve out time from their busy schedules.
“We try to get there and support each other as much as we can,” Jarret said.
This fall, there’s been plenty to cheer about in the Olson family.
Katie has helped lead the Lady Cavalier volleyball team to a 15-0 start overall and a 5-0 mark in the Northern Illinois Big 12 Conference West Division.
She is among the area leaders in assists (9.5) and points (4.5).
Jarret, meanwhile, has been one of the top players on the Bruin boys golf team that is 13-5 overall and 11-3 in the Three Rivers Conference.
“So far, we’re both successful,” Katie said. “That’s a real big part of what we try to do in our family. We always want to be successful. We’re trying to make every team better that we’re on. With both of our teams being successful right now, that’s really positive for our family.”
Jarret said he and Katie motivate each other to succeed.
“It definitely pushes us,” Jarret said about having the other do well. “We feed off of each other. If she’s doing well, then I try to do well, and if I’m doing well, she tries to do well. We’re a competitive family. We’re always competitive with everything we do.”
But they’re also supportive.
Kevin Chlum can be reached at 220-6939, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsEditor.