KEARNEY — University of Nebraska at Kearney men’s basketball coach Kevin Lofton announced the addition of New Zealand native Matt Brien on Thursday.
The 6-foot-4, 200-pound guard is UNK’s fourth recruit, joining Wahoo High’s Winston Cook and junior college transfers RJ Pair (Garden City C.C., Kan.) and Jake Walker (Snow College, Utah).
Brien has four years of eligibility remaining and will be older than most incoming American freshman. He spent this past season at OnPoint Academy, a prep school in El Reno, Okla., and the normal five years in high school in his native land.
At OnPoint, Brien and the Panthers faced other prep schools, junior colleges and junior varsity teams from the NAIA ranks. He went for 41 points in a loss to Eastern Oklahoma State in November. He also had a 42-point effort against the junior varsity squad from NAIA Mid-American Christian (Okla.) University.
In New Zealand, Brien attended St. Kevin’s College in his hometown of Oamaru before transferring to St. Patrick’s College in Wellington. He helped St. Kevin’s win two New Zealand A titles, was named St. Pat’s Team MVP in 2017 and was twice named MVP of the Secondary School National Tournament.