Young stars shining bright in San Antonio

Today you can get a good seat to watch some future NBA and international talent playing right here in San Antonio.

The FIBA Americas U18 Championships have been played at Greehey Arena at St. Mary’s University. Teams from the United States, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Canada and the Virgin Islands are all here competing.

While many are here to see Austin Rivers and the rest of a very talented Team USA, there’s also some very good talent on some of the other teams.

Ivan Loriente, Uruguay

Loriente, a 6-4 guard has been putting on a shooting cIlinic. in his game against Puerto Rico. Loriente shot 53 percent from the field and buried five three-pointers. He also corralled four rebounds and had two steals. He’s second in scoring among all tournament players with 22.5 points per game/

Kevin Acosta, Mexico


acosta

Acosta was very impressive in his outing against the Virgin Islands. When Mexico needed a basket they turned to Acosta and he delivered. He is a pure shooter and he can do it spotting up or off the dribble. He had the crowd at Greehey Arena “oohing” when he crossed his defender, stopped on a dime and lifted up for a three-pointer that swished through the basket. He scored 22 points against the Virgin Islands team shooting 62 percent from the field, but then went on a bit of a slump in last night’s game.

Aaron Brown, U.S. Virgin Islands

Through the first quarter of Monday’s game, I thought Brown was just a dunk machine and the beneficiary of two-on-one fast breaks. He proved me wrong throughout the rest of the game showing a nice outside shot and the speed to get by his defender for layups and highlight slams. Tim Duncan and Raja Bell may not be the only NBA players from the Virgin Islands for long. Brown ended the night with 39 points, 10 rebounds and four steals and he’s leading the tournament in scoring with 26 points per game.

Lucas Nogueira, Brazil

The 7 foot center from Brazil has been one of the most talked about players on press row. Many wonder if he might be good enough to be playing in the NBA now. Through all four games of the tournament, he’s averaging 14 points, nine rebounds and six blocked shots per game. Last night against Argentina, he led Brazil with 16 points, 12 rebounds and eight blocks. It’ll be interesting to see him against Pat Young in the Gold Medal game versus the US team.

About Michael A. De Leon

Michael founded Project Spurs in 2004. He started The Spurscast, the first Spurs podcast on the Internet, in 2005. Michael has been interviewed by the BBC, SportTalk, the Sports Reporters Radio Show, MemphisSportLive, OKC Sports Wrap and ESPN radio among others. He is a credentialed member of the media for the San Antonio Spurs and Austin Toros. He is also the founder of Project Spurs' sister sites, Toros Nation and Stars Hoops.

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