Gilas falls short vs Lebanon in tuneup game
MANILA, Philippines – Gilas Pilipinas fell short of its comeback effort as the visiting Lebanon team hacked out a 74-68 win in their tuneup game at the Epsilon Chi Center in UP Diliman on Friday, November 23.
The Filipinos shaved a deficit as large as 18 points to a whisker in the 4th quarter, 59-60, but the Lebanese pulled through when it mattered most to hand the home team their second loss in its last 3 friendly contests.
Japeth Aguilar paced the Nationals with 16 points while the San Miguel pair of Marcio Lassiter and June Mar Fajardo chalked up 11 and 9 points, respectively, in the loss.
Lebanon comfortably held a 46-28 lead early in the 3rd quarter before Gilas unloaded a 13-0 spurt – powered by Lassiter's 6 points – to narrow the gap to just 5 points.
An Arwind Santos layup early in the 4th cut the Filipinos' deficit to just a single point, 59-60, but the Lebanese never relinquished the lead.
Ali Haidar churned out 20 points to pace Lebanon while Ater Majok and Amir Saoud had 13 and 10 points, respectively, in the win.
Gilas and Lebanon meet again on Sunday, November 25, in the last of a string of tuneup games heading into the fifth window of the World Cup qualifiers.
Lebanon 74 – Haidar 20, Majok 13, Saoud 10, Abdel Nour 9, Bawji 6, Mehzer 5, Rustom 4, Akl 3, Ibrahim 2, Tabet 0, Khalil 0, Fares 0.
Philippines 68 – Aguilar 16, Lassiter 11, Fajardo 9, Santos 6, Rosario 5, Pringle 4, Slaughter 4, Tenorio 4, Wright 3, Lee 3, Rivero 2, Thompson 1, Castro 0, Erram 0.
Quarters: 20-16, 44-28, 57-55, 74-68. – Rappler.com