The podium drought continues for Gilas Pilipinas Boys in the 2023 FIBA Under-16 Asian Championship.
The Philippines settled for fourth place after falling to China, 59-87, on Sunday at Al-Gharafa Indoor Hall in Doha, Qatar.
The last time the Philippines landed on the podium was back in 2013, when they finished second in Tehran, Iran.
Gilas, who also lost to China on opening day (67-84), clearly lost their energy in the final four of the tournament.
Against the taller Chinese squad, the young Filipinos struggled mightily in the middle quarters, especially in the third quarter.
Already facing a 44-29 deficit, Gilas could only manage to score eight points in the third frame, turning the game into a rout.
Nevertheless, it was a mission accomplished for Josh Reyes’ boys in Qatar as they were able to secure their ticket to the FIBA Under-17 World Cup next year in Turkey after defeating Japan last Friday in the quarterfinals, 64-59.
Joaquin Ludovice paced the Philippines against the Young Dragons, finishing with 15 points, five rebounds, and two assists.
Kieffer Alas contributed 13 points and five rebounds, while Irus Chua fired 10 points in just six minutes.
Zhang Buyuan dominated the game, tallying 34 points and seven rebounds.
Huan Sinan and Wang Ziheng supported Zhang with 13 points and 11 rebounds, and 12 points and 10 rebounds, respectively.
Philippines 59 – Ludovice 15, Alas 13, Chua 10, Morales 8, Velasquez 4, Diao 2, Amos 2, Alegre 2, Williams 2, Daja 1, Banal 0, De Liano 0.
China 87 – Zhang 34, Huan 14, Wang 12, Shen 9, He 5, Huang 4, Li 3, Luo 3, Fu 3, Liu 0, Feng 0.
Quarterscores: 17-20, 29-44, 37-70, 58-87.