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Toews becomes McGrath’s first recruit in 2018 class

Kai+Toews+posted+this+graphic+to+his+Twitter+profile+on+Monday%2C+Sept.+25+to+confirm+his+verbal+commitment+to+UNCW+basketball.
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Toews becomes McGrath’s first recruit in 2018 class

Kai Toews posted this graphic to his Twitter profile on Monday, Sept. 25 to confirm his verbal commitment to UNCW basketball.

Kai Toews posted this graphic to his Twitter profile on Monday, Sept. 25 to confirm his verbal commitment to UNCW basketball.

Kai Toews/Twitter

Kai Toews posted this graphic to his Twitter profile on Monday, Sept. 25 to confirm his verbal commitment to UNCW basketball.

Kai Toews/Twitter

Kai Toews/Twitter

Kai Toews posted this graphic to his Twitter profile on Monday, Sept. 25 to confirm his verbal commitment to UNCW basketball.

Collin Underwood, Contributing Writer

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With little more than a month remaining before tipoff of the regular season, UNC Wilmington men’s basketball coach C.B. McGrath landed his first recruit of the 2018 class on Monday with a verbal commitment from point guard Kai Toews.

Toews, a native of Japan, spent the first 15 years of his life in Kobe City on a man-made island off the country’s coast. Following his freshman year of high school, Toews came to the United States and has resided in Mount Hermon, Massachusetts, since then. He is currently a senior at North Mount Hermon School and plays on the AAU circuit with the New England Playaz.

The recruiting trail that led Toews to UNCW started about a year ago and was initially unintentional.

“When C.B. was at UNC, he recruited my teammate, and so he got to see me a couple times last year when he would come up to NMH,” said Toews to The Seahawk. “After he got the new job at UNCW, he saw me play at the Adidas Gauntlet Finale in South Carolina and offered me.”

That history with McGrath was a leading factor in Toews choosing UNCW.

“I felt a great connection with the coaching staff, especially C.B.,” said Toews. “They never pressured me to commit or gave me a deadline. They understood that it was a big decision and that it was going to take time to consider all of my options and find the best school for me.”

Toews cited McGrath’s experience coaching at the highest ranks of college basketball with some of the most talented basketball players in the country as a reason for his commitment. He said an opportunity to learn and grow with a first-year head coach was exciting.

“C.B. has coached at the highest level and seen the best of the best, so I felt that he would give me the best advice on how to succeed at the next level,” he said. “As a point guard, if there is one thing I learned at NMH, it’s that it is important to have a good relationship with your head coach and I feel like I can build a strong connection with C.B.”

Aside from basketball, UNCW and the Wilmington community impressed Toews on his two visits.

“The school is amazing. Great campus, big school, right on the beach.”

Toews said the university’s Cameron School of Business was a reason for commitment. He plans on majoring in business at UNCW and feels it offers a great education in that area.

During his second visit to campus, he got a taste of what it will be like to play basketball at UNCW. On his unofficial visit, Toews was able to play pick-up games and build chemistry with his future teammates. He said sophomore guard Jaylen Fornes and Florida Atlantic transfer Jeantal Cylla were two players he connected with the most, along with junior Devontae Cacok.

“They are both scorers and I think I could help them get good shots,” said Toews. “And of course Devontae, but I will only have one year with him.”

As for Toews’ goals, they are pretty simple: go to the NCAA Tournament and win a CAA championship.

“I think we can contend for that all four years. I want to be the lead point guard right away,” he said. “I also want to do whatever I can to continue UNCW’s winning culture.”

1 Comment

One Response to “Toews becomes McGrath’s first recruit in 2018 class”

  1. John eatkins on September 29th, 2017 12:08 pm

    I know you will love playing at uncw we are building a great program and you will be a big part of it see you next year

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Toews becomes McGrath’s first recruit in 2018 class