Manila Chooks absorbed a 22-11 defeat at the hands of Ulaanbaatar in a deflating start to its campaign in the 2022 Chooks-to-Go FIBA 3×3 World Tour Manila Masters, Saturday at the Ayala Malls Manila Bay.
The home team simply could not get going right from the start, and things turned from bad to worse as the club from Mongolia zoomed ahead with Steve Sir on the steering wheel en route to gaining early leadership of Pool B (1-0).
Highly touted as the best shooter in all of FIBA 3×3, the Canadian marksman led his new team with 11 points as he went 5-of-8 beyond the arc.
Sir helped Ulaanbaatar to a 3-0 start, and the match would turn into one so lopsided that saw them establish a 15-5 lead still with 6:18 remaining.
The native of Edmonton would go on to knock the game-clinching two-pointer as the tried-and-tested squad only needed less than six minutes to finish the match, making the affair in line to take the fastest win award.
Dulguun Enkhbat provided ample support with seven points. Delgernyam Davaasambuu had three points, as Otgonjargal Tsogot added one.
On the other hand, Manila was led by the five points and four rebounds of Henry Iloka. Dennis Santos made four, as Chico Lanete chipped in two.
Manila will take on a familiar foe in Zaisan MMC Energy in an all-important clash later at 8:25 p.m. to cap off Day 1 of the two-day festivities.
World no. 3 Liman, meanwhile, opened Pool C action with a 21-16 (7:42) win over Gurugram.
Burly guard Nebojsa Kilijan led Liman’s balanced attack with seven points, powering the Serbians to the verge of a quarterfinals berth in the maximum level FIBA 3×3 tournament.
Pool C Game 1:
Liman 21 – Kilijan 7, Ratkov 5, Vasic 5, Kojic 4.
Gurugram 16 – Gill B. 6, Shastri 5, Gill I. 4, Ramirez 1.
Time: Kojic FT (7:42)
Pool D Game 1:
Ulaanbaatar 22 – Sir 11, Enkhbat 7, Davaasambuu 3, Tsogt 1.
Manila 11 – Iloka 5, Santos 4, Lanete 2, Holmqvist 0.
Time: Sir 2 (5:52)