Last weekend, St. John's recruit Richard Freudenberg, a 6'9" forward from Germany, helped lead the German under-18 team to the title in the Albert Schweitzer Tournament - the first-ever win for the host country since the Tournament's inception in 1958. The Tournament, also known as AST, is an annual tourney of under-18 boys basketball featuring sixteen of the best squads worldwide.
Germany won the championship this season, defeating Serbia by pulling away early in the second half for a final score of 70-65.
Freudenberg's teammate Kostja Mushidi won MVP while Freudenberg won all-Tournament honors.
Freudenberg averaged 12 points per game in the seven game run to the championship, adding eight total rebounds, a steal and a block. He had the team's largest plus/ minus ratings at 18.6 points while he was on the floor (which was also the highest in the tournament), though only playing 21 minutes per contest. The per-game rebounding number was fourth-best in the tournament.
The incoming freshman from Germany showed great quickness, and basketball savvy for his height and position. He has a quick release without much fanfare when he sets his feet, can handle the ball a bit, and will attack the basket.
A lack of strength is well-known for the slim Freudenberg, though he turns 18 at the end of August. And consistency will be something to work on. He went 0/9 from beyond the arc in the team's last three games, but 4/7 in the first two contests.
Despite some shooting struggles, his rebounding and ability to draw fouls remained strong, and his ability to slice through defenses - along with his shot - are exciting for St. John's fans hoping for some more dynamic scoring up front.
Coming to a team where he will be able to play off of some dynamic guards in Marcus LoVett, Shamorie Ponds and Federico Mussini should help as he adjusts to the American college game.