An all-pro Gilas Pilipinas side just proved how dangerous it can be when brought into the Southeast Asian stage.
The Filipino dribblers obliterated Singapore by 52 points, 110-58, to open their 30th SEA Games campaign on a strong note Wednesday evening at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.
Explosive guard Stanley Pringle was the starter of the rout, dropping 11 of his 14 points in the opening frame alone as he helped Gilas erect a 30-13 lead heading into the next period.
The rest then followed suit as Troy Rosario, Matthew Wright, June Mar Fajardo, and Vic Manuel made their presence felt strongly, much to the delight of the sizeable crowd inside.
“It’s fun coaching such a powerhouse team, no doubt about it,” admitted coach Tim Cone moments after the bout.
“But I don’t think we played our best basketball tonight,” he added. “We’re a little bit herky-jerky, we weren’t smooth offensively, we had to make adjustments defensively at halftime. But honestly, I believe we’ll get better and better as the games go along. We’ll get more comfortable with each other.”
Rosario top-scored for Gilas with 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting from the field, along with eight rebounds.
Manuel produced 14 points and four rebounds in his national team debut. Wright provided 13 points on three triples and five assists while Fajardo added 12 markers and six boards.
Chris Ross was scoreless but he had a big contribution with his game-high 10 assists, five dimes, a steal, and a block.
Leon Kwek was the lone double-digit scorer for Singapore with 10 points. Forward Delvin Goh and national team mainstay Wong Wei Long each finished with eight markers in the defeat.
The crowd may have been pro-Gilas but hefty Singaporean center Lavin Raj became a fan favorite, receiving cheers whenever he gets the ball. The 19-year-old had five points and two boards.
Gilas will take a break Thursday before facing Vietnam on Friday, December 6, at 8:15 p.m. still at the MoA Arena.
Philippines 110 — Rosario 15, Pringle 14, Manuel 14, Wright 13, Fajardo 12, Aguilar 9, Slaughter 9, Standhardinger 8, Lassiter 7, Ravena 6, Tenorio 3, Ross 0.
Singapore 58 — Kwek 10, Wong ZH 8, Goh 8, Toh 8, Wong WL 6, Lim 6, Raj 5, Rengarajan 4, Liew 3, Low 0, Han 0.
Quarterscores: 30-13, 48-28, 77-48, 110-58.
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