Augie Johnston is a 25 year old 185cm guard from Atascadero, Calfornia. He played at Cal.St.-Monterey (NCAA2) and his infinite range has proven he was one of the best shooters in the country. Although he is a prolific shooter, it is his overall ability to score the basketball and defend the opponent’s best player that is so impressive. He is one of the most professional and hard working players. As a captain at Cal State Monterey Bay he has shown to have all the leadership qualities you would want in a point guard or shooting guard. He started his professional basketball career in 2009-2010 for Velbert Baskets (Germany-2.Regionalliga), playing 9 games: 28.4ppg. Last season, he played for SpVgg Rattelsdorf Independents (Germany-Regionalliga) playing 25 games: 29.8ppg . This season, he is playing for SC Rist Wedel and helped bring the team into the playoffs against Nordlingen.This season in the PRO B he is averaging 16,3ppg, 4,2rpg and 4,0apg in 24 games. He spoke to German Hoops about the current season.
SC Rist Wedel is meeting the Nordlingen Giants in the playoffs. How excited are you about this challenge?
I’m very excited because I feel we have a team good enough to beat anyone in the ProB and this will be a good test for us to see if we can put all the hard work together and get a couple wins and move to the second round.
SC Rist Wedel closed out the season with a 3 game winning streak. How ready is the team for the playoffs?
We are more ready than ever before. Everyone is healthy on the team right now and we have added Patrick Wischnewski a little more than half way through the season to the roster and he has really helped us and now our chemistry with him on the floor is clicking very well.
SC Rist Wedel go in as the underdog. Is this a position the team feels comfortable with having nothing to lose? What will be key in winning this series?
We always have something to lose because we want to win of course, but I’m sure the pressure is much greater for Nordlingen. I think the key for us to winning the game is to limit the role players production on their team. They have two very good Americans and we can’t expect to completely shut them down, but if we can keep them under their season averages and then limit the rest of the players on their team we will have a good chance to win. On the offensive end we need to get out and run and look for our inside players in the half court.
How excited are you about playing against one of the top players in the league Jason Jamerson?
I always look forward to a challenge and if we can take away his 3 point shooting that will be huge for us since most players have difficulty finishing inside against us due to our size, but anytime you play against a player like Jason it pumps you up to another level.
SC Rist Wedel have some guys that can really put up points on the board. Which player will be key on defense in getting the club started?
Yeah we have many different weapons on offense and defense. We have two players that really stand out on the defensive end. One is a young “up and comer” in Kay Gausa and the other is a seasoned vet in Mac Davis. Practice is always a battle for me going against these two and I have alot of confidence in their defense against any player in this league.
You played in the Regionaliga the last two seasons averaging nearly 30ppg last season for SpVgg Rattelsdorf Independents. The move to the PRO B hasn´t effected your play. Is the next step the PRO A?
I would be honored to play in the ProA next season, and that is the next goal for my career, but as long as I am playing basketball I will be happy and no matter where I end up next season I hope to win as many games as possible and help in any way I can.
Ismet Akpinar belongs to the biggest German basketball talents from the year 1995. How have you helped his game best?
What have I helped him with? Or what has he helped me with, haha? Really though Ismet is like no other player I have ever seen before at his age. He is very self critical and so I always try to remind him that he is still young and will make mistakes but to keep playing aggressive. Most players his age and with his talent level are not easy to coach because they think they know it all, but Ismet is the total opposite. He is always looking for ways to improve and never talks back to our coach or other players, and this alone is going to take him far.
Who was the best player that you played against in the NCAA2 that might be in the NBA or in Europe now?
Someone that comes to mind that many Germans might know is Kevin Johnson who played for LTi Giessen 46ers two years ago and averaged 9 and 7 for them.
What are your early 2012 March Madness Final 4 picks?
Kentucky, Duke, Marquette, and Michigan St.
What was the last DVD movie that you saw?
I actually just watched American Gangster. I’m a huge Denzel Washington fan.
Thanks Augie for the chat.