ND Guard Joe Hanstad Gets Minnesota Interest

Joe Hanstad, a 6-foot-3 sophomore guard from Dickinson (ND) High, was recently named Gatorade North Dakota Boys Basketball Player of the Year. Hanstad averaged 26.8 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.9 blocks shots per game. He is playing for the Net Gain AAU program and made a visit to the Minnesota basketball offices Sunday. GoldenSports.Net caught up with Hanstad to learn the latest.

Joe Hanstad has 1,029 career points and figures to surpass all-time Class A scoring leader Jeff Boschee's mark of 1,996. Hanstad shined in the state tournament as he scored 42 points against Bismarck in the third-place game. He grabbed eight rebounds while shooting 16 of 27 from the field to help the Midgets to a 65-62 win.

GoldenSports.Net caught up with Hanstad after practice with Net Gain Sunday.

How do you feel that your year went this season?

"This was a lot of fun. We had a good team. We were picked preseason fifth in our conference and finished third in the state. We were pretty happy about that."

What was the reason your team was able to do so well despite not having high expectations for the team?

"I think because we were so tight. We got along so well. We've been playing together for a long time, so we just jelled as a team."

What types of things are you working on to improve as a player?

"Just continue shooting and I am really working on ball-handling because I might have to play some point a little bit, so I am definitely working on ball-handling and shooting. Fundamentals."

I saw you shooting free throws (in groups of 20). I didn't see you miss many. How many did you make?

"I had 20, 20 and 20. Then 16 out of 20 and 18 of 20."

Do you lose a lot of players from this year's high school team?

"We only had three seniors and we had three sophomore starters."

What was the reason you decided to play for Net Gain this year?

"I think that Marques (Watts) is such a good coach. His networking with everyone and his relationship with college coaches. He has such good guys playing on the team, so I think that it is going to be a lot of fun."

What schools are you hearing from the most?

"I talk to Gonzaga the most. North Dakota State and I am going to Minnesota today."

Have you heard much from the Gophers before?

"They called Coach Wilson, my high school coach, Friday as we were driving down and coach said that we are heading over there. So that was really the first time I had heard from them."

What offers do you have right now?

"The two North Dakota schools have offered."

Did you have a favorite school growing up that you really watched a lot?

"I don't, actually. I have thought about that a lot. I think that any of those would be cool."

Do you have any other plans to visit some college in the near future?

"I am going out to Gonzaga again sometime. I am going to go out there and to the Elite camp. Besides that, I don't have anything planned."

Did you get a chance to go out to Gonzaga for a game this season?

"We went out there this fall for Midnight Madness. That was a lot of fun."

Do you know many of the kids here at all?

"No. This is my first time. Just getting to know everyone."

You made some nice passes today, but the coaches were telling you to shoot the ball. Is it tough playing with guys you have never played with before?

"Just getting to know the guys. It's different. You don't want to come in here and just start chucking the ball. It was a lot of fun. They all seemed like nice guys."

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