The Gilas Pilipinas Youth squad finally scored a victory in the 2019 FIBA U19 World Cup in Greece after a strong second half propelled them against Asian arch-rival China, 86-72 on Saturday.
From a slim 41-37 lead at the half, the Filipinos turned the switch on in the 2nd half and established a more sizable advantage.
A triple by Carl Tamayo followed by a lay-up from Dave Ildefonso made it 50-39 halfway in the 3rd frame.
Later on, Jie Xu hit a long ball that pulled China closer, 55-57 but the Philippines responded strong as an 8-0 run helped them regain control.
Tamayo had a breakout outing for the nationals, scoring 20 points on 50% shooting. He also made 3 triples.
Ildefonso led Gilas in scoring with 21 markers and also tallied 6 rebounds and 7 assists. Rhayyan Amsali and James Spencer both had 11 points.
Gilas shot 50% from the field and over 41% from three-point line on 13 conversions. Coach Sandy Arespacochaga’s boys also assisted 20 field goal makes and had 42 rebounds.
Haowen Gou had 23 points, 4 boards, and 5 dimes for China.
The Philippines’ win is a repeat over China in their FIBA Asia U18 Cup battle-for-3rd win.
The team will now move to the battle for 13th and 14th spots of the U19 World Cup.