Gilas Pilipinas 3×3 was on the wrong end of a rout, suffering a 12-21 (1:45) loss at the hands of surprise Pool C leader Qatar in the 2021 FIBA 3×3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament, Wednesday evening at Hauptplatz in Graz, Austria.
Qatar was coming off a 17-12 win over the Dominican Republic earlier in the day. It surged to a quick 7-0 start that was powered by Nedim Muslic’s three points.
Santi Santillan — the no. 6 ranked player in the country prior to the FIBA 3×3 ranking freeze last year — provided the spark for the nationals. He scored the first bucket of the team with 8:10 left.
Joshua Munzon then fired back-to-back deuces to cut Qatar’s lead to five, 5-10.
However, the speed of Muslic and the power Seydou Ndoye — plus a bevy of bad passes by Gilas 3×3 — extended Qatar’s lead to 14-6 midway through the game.
CJ Perez tried to lift the Filipinos back into the game but Abdulrahman Saad caught fire. He buried deuce after deuce to give his side a 19-11 lead. Muslic scored the game-winner, a quick deuce, with 1:45 left.
Saad had a game-high 10 points built on four deuces along with five rebounds. Muslic added nine markers.
Qatar, a team that trained under Serbian great Dusan Bulut for this competition, had plenty of discipline. They committed just three turnovers and three fouls for the entire contest.
“It’s a great feeling but we don’t wanna be too happy with it. We still have two more games left,” said Saad.
“We’re looking forward to being better.”
In contrast, the Philippines had seven turnovers with Perez and Tatuaa accounting for five.
Perez and Munzon paced Gilas 3×3 with five markers each, while Santillan and Tautuaa had one point apiece.
Gilas 3×3 will next face Slovenia later in the day. Slovenia lost to France earlier in the day, 19-17.
Philippines 12 — Munzon 5, Perez 5, Santillan 1, Tautuaa 1.
Qatar 21 — Saad 10, Muslic 9, Ndoye 2, Saeed 0.