In preparation for the upcoming FIBA Asia games, Gilas Pilipinas notched a win over PBA team Talk ‘N Text Tropang Texters, 93-77 in the Master Game Face MVP Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday evening.
The two teams went back-and-forth in terms of scoring as no one had a clear edge momentum-wise. The largest lead of the first quarter was at 15-6 with Jayson William-Castro providing the pull up jumpers early. However, the lead was erased as Larry Fonacier waxed hot from the perimeter. Despite a cold shooting from behind the arc, Gilas had a one-point lead after the first 10 minutes of action.
With energy players Calvin Abueva and Terrence Romeo entering for Gilas in the second, the Philippine team started to make a bit of separation as they posted double-digit lead twice during the second quarter. In the middle of the period, TNT erased a 22-32 deficit with a 9-1 spurt and Fonacier and Tautuaa leading the fight back. However, quick transition plays enabled Gilas to reinstall a cushion en route to their five-point advantage at the half.
The third quarter was the deciding period of this match as thew Gilas outscored their PBA counterparts. 24-12. Defense also tightened up as TNT started to blank their shots from the perimeter. Meanwhile, Asi Taulava, Calvin Abueva and Ranidel De Ocampo all made their presence felt underneath with the help of good player spacing and ball distribution from his teammates. They tallied their biggest lead of the game at 69-50 and did not let any sorts of comeback to occur.
In the last quarter, TNT was able to win the quarter scoring-wise, 25-24 but too much depth by the Gilas team proved to be too much. In the latter part of the game, Romeo heated up from the field while Matt Ganuelas-Rosser put the exclamation point with a posterizing dunk over Tautuaa to seal the deal.
Gilas shot the ball better as they made 56% from the field compared to TNT’s 46% clip. They also had more points in the paint, 56-34 and had less turnovers, 11-18.
Romeo had 22 markers, 5 rebounds and five assists in an all-around game off the bench. Andray Blatche had 12 but shot only 1 of 8 from three-point territory. Former Gilas player Larry Fonacier led the Texters with 20.
Gilas will face the New Zealand team, who also won earlier, tomorrow at 5pm while TNT battles Chinese Taipei beforehand.
Philippines (93) – Romeo 22, William 14, Blatche 12, De Ocampo 12, Abueva 8, Intal 7, Taulava 6, Thoss 6, Ganuelas-Rosser 4, Pingris 2, Hontiveros 0, Norwood 0
Talk ‘N Text (73) – Fonacier 20, Tautuaa 16, Rodriguez 12, Seigle 8, Sumalinog 5, Rosario 5, Reyes 3, Miranda 2, Reyes 2, Carey 2, Labagala 2, Espiritu 0
Quarters: 23-22, 45-40, 69-52, 93-77
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