William Kohler did a lot of growing this basketball season — in height and in skill.
The Charleswood resident and athlete recently played for Team Manitoba in the 2014 17U National Championships, run by Basketball Canada, at the Saville Community Sports Centre in Edmonton, Alta. from July 25 to 30.
The 17-year-old, who’s going into Grade 12 at Oak Park High School this fall, was named MVP in the tournament.
"It felt pretty good," Kohler, who plays forward, said. "We won every single game."
According to Dan Becker, head coach for the boys’ 17U team, Kohler showed Canada what he was capable of at the tournament.
"He’s about 6-8, a long, versatile guy," Becker said. "He was one of our best competitors. He really grew through this tournament, so it was a big moment for him. He’s been going through a lot of growth spurts lately."
The 17U team played five games during the entire five-day tournament. First, they played against Quebec in the opening game, which Team Manitoba won 70-68. Kohler picked up 17 points and eight rebounds in that game.
They went on to play against New Brunswick, a game which Team Manitoba won 76-60.
"Kohler had 14 points in that game," Becker said.
The third game was against Saskatchewan, winning with a score of 77-69. In that game, Kohler contributed 21 points.
Team Manitoba played against Nova Scotia in the semifinals, and they won again 83-65.
"That game, Kohler had 32 points and 10 rebounds," Becker said. "That was a huge game."
In the finals, Team Manitoba won 79-61, in which Kohler scored 20 points and made 7 rebounds.
According to Kohler, one of his strengths in basketball is being able to make smart decisions at the right time. He said one weakness is his physicality.
In the future, Kohler plans on attending university, working his way to medical school.