Gilas Pilipinas falls to South Korea in friendly match
Korea explode for 37 points in a sizzling third-quarter display as they build a lead secure enough to fend off a late comeback from Gilas Pilipinas
ANTIPOLO, Philippines — Gilas Pilipinas squandered a double-digit lead against South Korea and suffered a 96-92 loss in the first of their two friendlies at Anyang Gymnasium in Gyeonggi-Do on Friday, June 17.
The hosts exploded for 37 points in the third quarter after scoring just 34 in the first half as Korea built a lead secure enough to fend off a late comeback from the Philippines.
A reverse layup from SJ Belangel and a Dwight Ramos and a pulled Gilas Pilipinas within 5 points with less than two minutes to go, 82-87, but a triple Heo Ung allowed Korea to create more separation On the road to victory.
Reigning Korean Basketball League MVP Choi Jun-yong starred in the victory with 16 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists as he delivered 12 points in the third quarter.
Kiefer Ravena knocked down a corner triple to give the Philippines a 46-34 lead early in the third period before Choi powered a spirited 37-14 run for a 71-60 lead over Korea.
Crucial buckets from Ravena, Ramos, Belangel and William Navarro kept Gilas Pilipinas afloat in the final frame, but they ultimately failed to fight back from a 17-point deficit in the quarter.
The longest-serving member of this edition of the national team, Ravena paced the Filipinos with 22 points on a 4-of-9 clip from long range, while Ramos had 16 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals.
Promising performances from debutants Rhenz Abando and Kevin Quiambao proved to be the silver lining of defeat as they intensified in the absence of Angelo Kouame and Dave Ildefonso.
Abando particularly stole the show, scattering all of his 11 points in the second period after going a perfect 3-of-3 from three-point field.
Carl Tamayo also finished with 11 points to go with 4 assists and 3 rebounds, while Quiambao had 6 points, 2 rebounds and 2 steals in his first game for the senior team.
Now coached by Nenad Vucinic, the Philippines struggled against Korea despite playing with just 10 men due to premature injuries to Kouame (knee) and Ildefonso (ankle).
Heo Hoon and Yeo Jin-seok scored 17 points each to lead Korea.
Gilas Pilipinas is aiming for redemption when he faces Korea again on Saturday.
Korea 96 – Yeo 17, Heo H 17, Choi 16, Heo U 16, Ra 14, Kim 6, Yang 5, Lee DS 2, Song 2, Jang 1.
Philippines 92 – Ravena 22, Ramos 16, Tamayo 11, Abando 11, Abarrientos 8, Chiu 6, Navarro 6, Quiambao 6, Belangel 4, Lopez 2.
Quarters: 16-14, 34-43, 71-63, 96-92.