Gilas wins all five of its FIBA World Cup qualifying games

Nov 15, 2022

Spread the love

In the fifth window of the FIBA World Cup Asian qualifiers, GILAS Pilipinas stepped up their game in the second half to defeat Saudi Arabia, 76-63, and sweep the series in Jeddah early on Monday (Manila time).

As they faced the host in a combative, low-scoring first half, the Filipinos had a difficult start to the game at the King Abdullah Sports City Hall.

However, they were able to break free at the start of the third period because of the outside shooting of the guard Roger Pogoy, the court smarts of the big man Kai Sotto, and the rebounding skills of the playmaker Scottie Thompson.

Before Pogoy started hitting clutch three-pointers, a five-point Philippine lead at the half had grown to a sizable 38-25 edge after seven straight points to start the second half.

The TNT guard made consecutive long-range baskets to give Gilas their biggest shot of the game, 50-34.

Pogoy finished with 13 points and tied Ramos for the team lead in scoring after making 3-of-7 three-point attempts.

The Filipinos secured a back-to-back victory in their November window games in the Middle East with the victory, which was a rematch of their 84-46 thrashing of the same club in August, and they now have a third consecutive 5-3 record in Group E.

Last Friday, they defeated Jordan, 74-66, in Amman, the country’s capital.

“We knew it was going to be a tough game. We have high respect for Saudi Arabia. Obviously, we’re very happy with the result,” during the post-game press conference, Philippine team head coach Chot Reyes.

With 11 points, nine rebounds, and five blocks, Kai Sotto also had a strong game for the Philippines. His effort was highlighted by the play of the game, in which he finished an impressive two-handed alley-oop slam off a long pass from Thompson to give the Philippines a 65-53 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

The Thompson to Sotto play got the place to its feet and sent the throngs of Filipinos living in the Middle East who came to support the team into a frenzy.

Thompson nearly had a double-double after finishing with nine points, nine rebounds, three assists, and two steals. CJ Perez scored 10 points.

Currently coached by Dutchman Johan Roijakkers, Mathna Almarwani led Saudi Arabia with 19 points on 5-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc.

In addition to having eight rebounds, Almarwani attempted to bring the home team back until the final two minutes. The home team also received 16 points from Khalid Abdel.

Gilas won’t take the field again until the sixth and last qualifying window in February, when it hosts Jordan and Lebanon, accordingly.

After the defeat, Saudi’s Group E record dropped to 2-6.

The Scores

Philippines (76) – Ramos 13, Pogoy 13, Sotto 11, Perez 10, Thompson 9, Parks 8, Aguilar 6, Kouame 5, Malonzo 1, Oftana 0, Erram 0, Quiambao 0.

Saudi Arabia (63) – Ma. Almarwani 19, Abdel Gabar 16, Mo Almarwani 8, Kadi 6, Aljohar 5, Ashoor 4, Shubayli 2, Mohammed 2, Belal 1, Saleh 0, Almuwallad 0, Albargawi 0.

Quarters: 16-16; 31-25; 55-45; 76-63

Atlético de Madrid announces Mega Casino World (MCW) as Official Regional Partner
Bundesliga International agrees on a regional partnership with Mega Casino World in Asia
MCW Sports Newsletter subscription
Subscribe to our Newsletter
Subscribe to our Newsletter