Gilas Pilipinas 3×3 were overwhelmed by world power Slovenia, bowing 11-21 (7:33) to remain winless in Pool C of the 2021 FIBA 3×3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament, Wednesday evening at Hauptplatz in Graz, Austria.
Despite coming off a stunning 17-19 loss to France earlier, Slovenia, a team composed of the third best FIBA 3×3 team in the world Piran, showed poised as it methodically dissected Gilas 3×3.
On the other hand, Gilas 3×3, who were coming off a 12-21 (8:15) loss to Qatar, could not find an answer to its woes.
“It’s pretty easy. We know that we made stupid mistakes the first game, we lost something in our head but it’s a long tournament so we managed to stay together,” said world no. 31 Anže Srebovt.
“This was an easy win for us, but we look forward to winning some more games.”
Easy of a win it was.
Though the country’s no. 1 player Joshua Munzon kept Gilas in pace with Slovenia early, their opponents suddenly surged ahead through crisp passing. That led to wide-open layups and deuces.
Leading 4-3, Slovenia surged with an 11-0 blitz with world no. 23 Gašper Ovnik and no. 18 Simon Finzgar draining four deuces.
Munzon did his best to keep the Filipinos afloat but Srebovt kept blowing by Mo Tautuaa for easy buckets.
Ovnik sent Slovenia to match-point with 2:36 left while a free throw by Finzgar sealed the deal 19 seconds later.
Finzgar was a man amongst boys in the game, scoring nine points on a perfect 3-of-3 shooting from two-point country.
Ovnik and Srebovt added six markers apiece.
Munzon paced the Philippines with seven points while Perez added 3 markers.
Gilas fell to a tie for last place in Pool C with the Dominican Republic as the two nations sport identical 0-2 marks. Qatar and France hold joint lead at 2-0.
Gilas 3×3 will hope for a miracle on Friday when it takes on France and the Dominican Republic. It is still mathematically possible for the Philippines to advance to the next round but it needs to see Qatar and France lose both of its remaining games while hitting the 21-point mark twice for the tiebreaker.
Philippines 12 – Munzon 7, Perez 3, Tautuaa 1, Santillan 0.
Slovenia 21 – Finzgar 9, Ovnik 6, Srebovt 6, Kavgic 0.