FIBA World Cup

Ice-cold Gilas Pilipinas absorbs 46-point rout from New Zealand

Delfin Dioquino

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Ice-cold Gilas Pilipinas absorbs 46-point rout from New Zealand

THRASHING. Kiefer Ravena and Gilas Pilipinas absorb a beating against New Zealand.


Needing a perfect game to stand toe to toe against New Zealand, Gilas Pilipinas goes ice-cold from the field and tallies more turnovers than assists in a rough road loss

MANILA, Philippines – Gilas Pilipinas succumbed against a suffocating New Zealand defense as it absorbed a 106-60 road beating in the third window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers on Thursday, June 30.

Needing a perfect game to stand toe to toe against the Kiwis, the Filipinos went ice-cold from the field and tallied more turnovers (19) than assists (11) on the way to the 46-point loss at the EventFinda Stadium in Auckland.

Carl Tamayo proved to be one of the few bright spots in the defeat, finishing with a game-high 16 points and 5 rebounds before he went down in the fourth quarter with an apparent ankle injury.

Tamayo scattered 9 points in the first two quarters, but the UP Maroons standout lacked sufficient help from his teammates as New Zealand jumped to a 26-point halftime advantage, 47-21.

Gilas Pilipinas trailed by a single possession midway through the opening frame, 5-8, until the Tall Blacks erected a 15-5 run to build a 23-10 advantage.

It only got worse for the Philippines in the second quarter, where it chalked up just 8 points, as the New Zealand doubled its lead to 47-21 going into the break.

“Very tough night for this young team. We came across a Tall Blacks team that displayed a high intensity and very good execution,” said Gilas Pilipinas head coach Nenad Vucinic.

“We struggled to contain them in that part of the game – physicality, intensity and speed.”

Rhenz Abando put up 11 points as the only other player in twin digits for the Philippines, which fell to 1-2 in Group A, with its other loss also coming at the hands of New Zealand via a 25-point thrashing in February.

Usual Gilas Pilipinas suspects Dwight Ramos and Kiefer Ravena struggled offensively as they totaled just 12 points on a combined 5-of-21 shooting.

Overall, the Filipinos shot a measly 34% from the field and a paltry 15% (4-of-26) from downtown.

Meanwhile, the hosts – who wrapped up the first round with a perfect 4-0 record – spread the wealth with six players in double figures led by 15 points from veteran Dion Prewster.

Finn Delany churned out 14 points, while Jordan Ngatai and Ethan Rusbatch delivered 12 points apiece in the win.

Gilas Pilipinas returns home to host India at the Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday, July 3, for its last assignment in the first round of the Asian Qualifiers.

Regardless of the results, New Zealand, the Philippines, and India will advance to the second round after Korea got disqualified from Group A.

The Scores

New Zealand 106 – Prewster 15, Delany 14, Ngatai 12, Rusbatch 12, Webster 11, Ili 10, Vodanovich 8, Britt 7, Cameron 6, Smith-Milner 5, Timmins 4, Harris 2.

Philippines 60 – Tamayo 16, Abando 11, Lopez 8, Ramos 6, Ravena 6, Quiambao 4, Belangel 3, Chiu 2, Navarro 2, Abarrientos 2, Ildefonso 0.

Quarters: 23-13, 47-21, 73-43, 106-60.


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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.