Logan Snyder refused to go home until he bested his older brothers in a game of “21.”
There were no rules in their playground basketball game. The Snyders didn’t call fouls. They pushed and shoved each other. Logan took a beating from his brothers, Sam and Luke, during one day in particular about two years ago, catching multiple elbows to the face and hitting the floor more than once.
Logan was bruised and bloodied by the time he finally won the fourth game.
“He was not going to stop,” Sam said. “I can remember that because we went home and mom was very upset with us because Logan looked like he had just got out of a boxing match. But he had a smile on his face because he won that last game.”
Logan Snyder needed to perform at a high level from a young age to compete with his brothers and their friends, and to that he gives credit for his success on the Penns Valley boys’ basketball team. He was around the Rams’ program for years — he went to Sam’s games growing up and served as the varsity team’s manager in sixth grade — and made his debut playing alongside Luke last season.
After developing his game with his brothers since he was in elementary school, Logan is leading Penns Valley in scoring with 16.0 points per game this season as a 6-foot-1 sophomore guard.
In Sam’s eyes, Logan is already a better player than his older brothers were at his age. Sam and Luke were “late bloomers” who didn’t become go-to scorers until they were seniors. Sam Snyder was a key reserve as a sophomore and developed into a 6-5 point guard who threw down dunks by the end of his career in 2012. Luke Snyder was a 6-5 center who drained 3-pointers and carried the scoring load for the Rams last season.
Logan Snyder has yet to reach his potential.
“I would think he’s going to end up as a fabulous player, one of the top in the area,” Penns Valley coach Terry Glunt said. “Our job right now is for him to feel comfortable in the role he has and just get better every day. He’s pretty solid right now, but there’s room for improvement. I would think any coach in the area would just be happy to have Logan on their team.”
Logan’s older brothers are still pushing him to reach his potential. He calls Sam, who lives in Utah, after almost every game. Sam gives him pointers and helps him stay calm during their conversations. Luke talked to him about attacking the basket after the Rams took on Philipsburg-Osceola this season. Both brothers make sure he fulfills his goals, asking him if he’s done his 100 push-ups each day or if he went to shoot or lift weights like he had planned.
He’s always set goals, writing them down on a whiteboard in his room, and aimed to be the best. When he was in third grade, he wanted to play on a sixth-grade travel team with Luke and proved to be a key contributor. He wanted to make the varsity team as a freshman, and he carved out a role as the Rams’ sixth man. When Kevin Montminy set Penns Valley’s career scoring record in 2011, Logan said he was going to break it.
Logan fondly remembers watching Sam and the rest of the Rams capture the District 6 championship in 2010.
“I was just a little youngster,” Logan said. “I pretty much dreamed of having that again and having the success he had, and it helped me grow into who I am today.”
He learned how to play fearlessly from his older brothers — a mentality Logan needed to survive whenever he stepped on the court — while developing his skills.
He already sees the floor better than Sam and Luke ever did. He’s already figuring out how to score for his team in his sophomore season. And Sam doesn’t hesitate to call Logan the “best athlete” of the brothers.
“He has done things that me and Luke have not done, and we won’t do,” Sam said. “When it comes to basketball, Logan has always been kind of head and shoulders better than both of us.”