MANILA, Philippines – Heroes were aplenty for Gilas Pilipinas in its first road win in the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers that saw it topple Jordan, 74-66, on Thursday, November 10 (Friday, November 11, Manila time).
Ray Parks scored 11 of his 13 points in the first half to keep the Philippines afloat before Scottie Thompson spearheaded a strong second-half charge as they silenced the home crowd at the Prince Hamzah Hall in Amman.
Thompson delivered his finest game for the national team, posting a near triple-double of 8 points, 13 rebounds, and 8 assists to key the Filipinos to a breakthrough road win through five windows of the Asian Qualifiers.
Gilas Pilipinas got demolished by New Zealand in Auckland in the second window and absorbed a narrow loss to Lebanon in Beirut in the fourth window.
A third straight road loss seemed imminent as Jordan seized a 41-37 lead at halftime before Thompson, Kai Sotto, and CJ Perez took turns in the second half.
Sotto finished with a team-high 16 points on top of 7 rebounds and 2 blocks, while Perez chalked up 11 points, 5 assists, and 3 rebounds.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game. We have very high respect for the Jordan basketball team. We’ve played them so many times already in the past,” said Philippines head coach Chot Reyes.
“Obviously we’re very happy with the result.”
Jordan still led 43-41 midway through the third quarter before the visitors turned the tides behind a 17-8 run as they mounted a 58-51 advantage going into the final salvo.
The Filipinos contained the Falcons to just 10 points in the third period.
Although limited to a tournament-low 5 points, Dwight Ramos made his presence felt for Gilas Pilipinas on the defensive end as he hounded naturalized Jordan star Dar Tucker, racking up 4 steals to go with 4 assists and 3 rebounds.
Roger Pogoy and Japeth Aguilar added 7 and 5 points, respectively, for the Philippines, which also won back-to-back games for the first time in the Asian Qualifiers and hiked its record to 4-3 in Group E.
Tucker finished with a game-high 23 points, but he scored just 9 points in the last two quarters as Jordan fired blanks, missing 22 of its 25 three-point attempts.
Jordan dropped to 3-4.
Philippines 74 – Sotto 16, Parks 13, Perez 11, Thompson 8, Pogoy 7, Ramos 5, Aguilar 5, Erram 4, Malonzo 3, Kouame 2, Oftana 0.
Jordan 66 – Tucker 23, Al Dwairi 18, Bzai 9, H. Abbas 7, Ibrahim 6, Alhendi 3, Alhamarsheh 0, Z. Abbas 0, Hussein 0, Kanaan 0, Alnajdawi 0.
Quarters: 21-20, 37-41, 58-51, 74-66.