Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Things looking way, way up for 6-foot-11 Posthumus

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CHAD Posthumus, the River East Kodiaks' 6-foot-11 senior post, has 23 schools trying to bring him in, defenders trying to take him down and teammates who look up to him.

The last year of high school basketball for the grade 12 student is proving to be just a bit stressful.

"I still love to play basketball, that hasn't changed. I do see the game a little differently now that it looks like it might help me further my education, but it's still so much fun to play," Posthumus said on Saturday afternoon after he was named to the all-star team at the 2009 Miles Macdonell Buckeye Classic varsity boys basketball tournament.

The No. 1-ranked Garden City Fighting Gophers beat River East 93-84 in the championship final in a packed gym at Miles Mac. Posthumus led all scorers with 42 points while Garden City's Jared Ogungbemi-Jackson, a tournament all-star, scored 29 points and Brayden Duff, the tournament MVP hit for 29.

It was a grudge-match of sorts between the two teams, as just last Wednesday they met in Kilcona Peguis Athletic Conference play, with River East winning 108-104. Posthumus scored 42 points and Garden City's top guns, Ogungbemi-Jackson and Duff, netted 30 and 24 points respectively.

Posthumus said he's doing his best to keep his focus on school and Kodiaks basketball at this point, as the future will take care of itself soon enough.

With the assistance of his dad Charles and his mom Diana (nee Quartel, who played basketball for the University of Winnipeg 1979-82), Posthumus said he has narrowed his list to about seven universities, but won't be doing any visits until after his high school season is over.

"The team comes first, before all that, it has to. Things are really coming together for our group and we all know that," Posthumus said. "At the beginning of the season, we didn't bond that well, but lately we've come together a lot and we've been in the final of the last two tournaments we've been in. We've got a chance to finish off the year in a really good way and you've just got to stay focused."

River East coach Ray Uzat said he has noticed a great growth in Posthumus on and off the court.

"From grade 10 through to now, there's a huge difference in the kind of player that he is, the type of maturity that he has, the competitiveness that he has," Uzat said.

Other recent hoops prospects from Manitoba include two seven-foot-tall athletes. Norm Froemel, who graduated from the U of W in 1995, played professionally in Germany for seven years before returning to be a teacher at his former school, J.H. Bruns Collegiate. Todd MacCulloch, a graduate of Shaftesbury High School, played at the University of Washington for three years and in the NBA from 1999-2003.

ashley.prest@freepres.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 18, 2009 C5

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