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PHOTOS: Memorial grad Kenneth Lofton Jr. named finalist for U19 World Cup Team

Louisiana Tech’s Kenneth Lofton, Jr. was named one of 17 finalists for the 2021 USA Basketball Men’s U19 World Cup Team, an announcement made late Monday night.

Lofton was a sophomore on the 2017 Memorial basketball team that won the state title.

He graduated from Memorial in 2019.

Lofton’s finalist status follows four practice sessions over two days at TCU in Fort Worth that involved 26 players.

Selections were made by the USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team Committee.

“Every one of the 26 players put in a lot of effort and showcased high level skillsets for the committee to consider which is what made things so difficult,” said Matt Painter, USA Basketball Junior National Team Committee chair and Purdue University head coach.

“The 17 finalists we identified offer coach Dixon and his coaching staff outstanding athleticism and versatility, and it puts us in excellent position to name the best possible USA team for the FIBA U19 World Cup.”

Lofton, who does not turn 19 until August, was named Third Team All-Conference USA and C-USA Freshman of the Year after helping leading LA Tech to a 24-win season and a third place finish in the National Invitation Tournament.

The finalists, made up of 10 players who completed their first collegiate season in 2020-21 and seven players from the high school class of 2021, will continue training twice a day in Fort Worth.

The final 12-member USA U19 World Cup Team will be announced prior to the team’s June 28 departure for Latvia, with the 2021 FIBA U19 World Cup taking place July 3-11.

FINALISTS

Patrick Baldwin, Jr. (Hamilton HS/Sussex, Wis.)
Kendall Brown (Sunrise Christian Academy/Cottage Grove, Minn.)
Kennedy Chandler (Sunrise Christian Academy/Memphis, Tenn.)
Jonathan Davis (Wisconsin/La Crosse, Wis.)
Caleb Furst (Blackhawk Christian School/Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Jordan Hall (Texas A&M/Wildwood, N.J.)
Chet Holmgren (Minnehaha Academy/Minneapolis, Minn.)
Harrison Ingram (St. Mark’s School/Dallas, Texas)
Jaden Ivy (Purdue/South Bend, Ind.)
Ryan Kalkbrenner (Creighton/St. Louis, Mo.)
Kenneth Lofton, Jr. (Louisiana Tech/Port Arthur, Texas)
Mike Miles (TCU/Lancaster, Texas)
Adam Miller (LSU/Chicago, Ill.)
Trey Patterson (Villanova/Somerset, N.J.)
Deivon Smith (Georgia Tech/Loganville, Ga.)
Jabari Walker (Colorado/Inglewood, Calif.)
Peyton Watson (Long Beach Poly Tech HS/Long Beach, Calif.)