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Lions tracking N.Y. AAU teammates

Athleticism is being valued more and more when evaluating high school hoops prospects, and 2013 Rochester (N.Y.) Bishop Kearny big man Chinonso Obokoh has plenty to offer.

Obokoh is a versatile big man.

Growing up playing soccer, the 6-foot-10, 220-pound center has phenomenal footwork for a big, but is also quick.

“Chinonso is a long, very long face up player, he’s big but he’s fast,” said AAU coach Kevin Sheppard. “Not like not big man fast, but he’s got fastest guy on the team speed.”

Obokoh gets a majority of his points at the rim, but he also has a quality jumper. During the EYBL season this year, the Albany City Rocks prospect hit 51 percent of his shots, including 7 of 14 from three, to go along with seven points, 5.8 rebounds, and two blocks per game in 20 contests.

Priding himself on defense and checking the other team’s bigs, Obokoh held his own against some of the best in the country, including keeping the nation’s No. 31 prospect, Beeja Anya, to 1 of 6 from the field for three points and one board.

Currently working on ball handling, Obokoh has offers from Syracuse, Villanova, Oklahoma, Wake Forest, Texas and Southern Cal, among others.

“We were at Syracuse a few weeks ago, coach Jim Boeheim wanted to get him on campus before the Olympics,” said Sheppard. “He’s been to Villanova, Pittsburgh and West Virginia. Chinonso wants to sit down after the July period is over and start really narrowing things down.

“Penn State has also been involved a lot over the past two weeks and there’s mutual interest, he goes back and forth with all the coaches, talking on the phone and texting.”

With a plan to take official visits, Obokoh would ideally like to have his decision made around the start of the high school season.

Millinghaus is now at Evelyn Mack Academy in North Carolina.

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Running the point for the Albany City Rocks is 2013 guard Shadell Millinghaus, a Brooklyn native who is currently playing for Evelyn Mack Academy in North Carolina.

Noting his desire to attack the rim and create contact, Millinghaus said when he needs to get points, he’s most comfortable getting to the bucket.

“Attacking the rim, I love to get to the rim, create some contact, get fouled and go to the line,” Millinghaus explained. “I like to push the ball, get out and run, try to make everyone around me look good as well. I’m a slashing point guard.”

The 6-foot-3, 200-pounder is a key cog for the City Rocks, leading the team with 11 points per game, as well as leading in minutes, shots attempted and made. Millinghaus also was tied with Obokoh grabbing 5.8 rebounds a game, and knocked down 46 percent of his threes.

“Defenders can’t stay in front of Shadell, he attacks on the dribble and finishes above the rim,” said Evelyn Mack Academy coach Tyson Waterman. “He is a tenacious defender, and he rebounds for his height as well as anyone in the country. He’s a big time defender, rebounder, and athlete who can guard the 1, 2 and 3 positions.”

Garnering interest from programs such as Oregon, Cincinnati, Penn State, USC, Pittsburgh, LaSalle and Iona, Millinghaus has yet to land any official offers.

“Coaches have been asking about his academics, but their academics are fine, a 2.5 GPA kid, we are going to really work with him on everything regarding the SAT and ACT prep, so he can be as prepared as possible,” informed Waterman. “He’s had a great summer showing the coaches he can play, I think these upcoming months are going to be very important for him.”

Millinghaus has already shown off his game this summer, but is working every day in the gym and weight room to improve his game on the court.

“I’m working hard on my jump shot, so I’m in the gym putting up shots and also in the weight room,” said Millinghaus, who shot 51 percent from the field this summer. “I never really worked out with weights before this year so I’m trying to do everything I can to get my body ready for college.”

Albany City Rocks are off this upcoming weekend, but will be getting ready for AAU Nationals down in Florida from July 25-30.

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