For the first time in history, a Philippine team has defeated South Korea in a FIBA-sanctioned youth-level competition.
The 2023-24 batch of Gilas Pilipinas boys achieved a historic feat on Friday (Manila time) by defeating South Korea 95-71 to advance to the 2023 FIBA Under-16 Asian Championship quarterfinals at Al-Gharafa Indoor Hall in Doha, Qatar.
Prior to this game, Gilas had lost to Korea four times in Under-16 competitions and five times in under-18 tournaments.
With this win, the Philippines has set up a matchup with the young Akatsuki of Japan in the quarterfinals, with the winner earning a ticket to the Under-17 World Cup in Turkey next year.
Against their continental rival, the young Pinoys played their best game to date.
Already holding a 28-18 lead to end the first 10 minutes of action, Gilas caught fire in the second frame, scoring a whopping 32 points, with 15 coming from downtown.
All in all, the boys of Josh Reyes knocked down 12 triples and held a lead that went as high as 34 points.
The Philippines also held a significant 57-35 rebounding advantage over South Korea.
Five Gilas players scored in double-digits, with Joaquin Ludovice leading the way with 25 points, including seven treys. Kurt Velasquez added 17 points, while Kieffer Alas tallied a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds.
Bonn Daja also produced a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while CJ Amos chipped in 10 points.
Daniel Edi was the sole standout for South Korea with 18 points.
Philippines 95 – Ludovice 15, Velasquez 17, Daja 13, Alas 11, Amos 10, Morales 9, Diao 4, Alegre 4, Williams 2, Banal 0, Chua 0, De Liano 0.
South Korea 71 – Edi 18, Yang 11, So 10, Eom 9, Yoon 6, Kim MG 4, Kim MJ 4, Jung 3, Song 2, Kim H 3, Heo 0.
Quarterscores: 28-18, 60-38, 80-54, 95-71.