Smart Gilas played without Marcus Douthit, but they still gave Mouttahed Tripoli of Lebanon a helluva time in the battle for fifth place. With Garvo Lanete and KG Caaleta waxing hot, the Pinoys almost pulled the rug from under their more seasoned foes for the second time in the past week.
As it turned out, however, the Lebanese managed to hold on to their slim lead and escape with a 77-75 victory. In the other games, Sporting Aramex of Jordan defeated the hometown Al Ahli squad for third place, while Al Riyadi (Sporting Beirut) defeated fellow Lebanese club Sagesse in the Finals to win the title.
The Gilas boys will next leave for the Super Keung Sheung Cup in Hong Kong, which features two club teams from Hong Kong, the national teams of Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, the defending champions Southern California Fukienese Association, and, naturally, the Hong Kong national squad.
It's a bummer, though, that, despite the Philippine Cup already done, only Gary David of Global Port has been confirmed to reinforce the otherwise cadet-laden team. Caaleta, Jay-R Reyes, and Ronjay Buenafe will all return to their mother clubs in the PBA, while Jayson Castro and LA Tenorio, both of whom were included in the original roster for the HK tourney, werent released for Gilas duty.
My beef here is that this would have been the perfect time to get 10-12 PBA players together with Douthit to start getting a feel for the international game in preparation for the FIBA Asia gig in August. Instead, this tournament will serve as the last big preparation for the cadet pool, who will banner the country in the Southeast Asian Games later this year.
That's a great objective, but I still feel that not sending PBA players is a really big missed opportunity. Sayang.
Mouttahed Tripoli (Lebanon) over SMART-Gilas Pilpinas, 77-75 The Smart Gilas cadet team played its best game in the 24th Dubai International Basketball Championship against Mouttahed Tripoli of Lebanon Friday but fell short of repeating over the team it beat in the elimination round to finish the tourney at sixth place. The Nationals, sans Marcus Douthit who sprained his ankle in their quarterfinal match against Sagesse on Thursday, engaged the bigger Lebanese team in a neck-and-neck battle but committed a costly turnover in endgame that blew their chance of pulling off an upset.
With Mouttahed up by just two points and with four seconds left in the game, Gilas made an errant pass off a baseline play that could have tied or even won the game for the Philippine squad. Mouttahed won the battle for fifth place, 77-75. In their first meeting on January 11, Gilas shaded Mouttahed, 79-77.
But despite the absence of Douthit, the young Pinoys showed grit and character in engaging the tough Lebanese club, which led by as much as 14 points in the first half. Mouttahed was ahead, 55-44, by halftime.
But the Nationals caught fire in the third canto as they unloaded six triples, three from KG Canaleta and two from Garvo Lanete, to take the drivers seat at 69-62. The payoff period saw a seesaw battle that had the game tied at 75-all in the last two minutes of play. But Mouttaheds Samer Mochref was able to sneak in a lay-up to give the lead back to the Lebanese.
Lanete finished with 27 markers on six of nine shooting from behind the arc, and eight boards while Canaleta and RR Garcia added 14 points apiece.
We learned a lot from this tournament but more importantly, we learned a lot about the players in the cadet line-up. Not only about their skills, but more importantly about their character and their ability to play when the stakes are high. But its so obvious that the competition here is far more superior than our players. We played against more experienced teams with three imports, said Reyes, who acknowledged the great effort shown by the cadet squad in the game.
Lanete was the most consistent scorer in this tournament for Gilas with 13.8 points per game average followed by Canaletas 12.2.
The cadet team is being groomed for the SEABA tournament and Southeast Asian Games. Some of the key members of the cadet squad will be joining selected PBA players to comprise the Gilas team that will compete in the Hong Kong invitational tournament next week. Expected to be tapped for the tournament are members of the recently crowned PBA All-Filipino champion Talk N Text such as Ranidel De Ocampo, Larry Fonacier, Kelly Williams and Jimmy Alapag. Gilas hopes to qualify for the World Cup next year by winning the Asian championship, which will be hosted by the Philippines later this year
The following piece is a re-post from InterAKTV:
Gary David rejoins Gilas as they gear up for the Super Keung Sheung Cup The SMART-Gilas Pilipinas national team will get a glimpse of the competition from the Southeast Asian region in the 19th Super Kung Sheung Cup International Basketball Invitational Championship this week in Hong Kong.
The Philippines is bracketed in Group B of the competition alongside the national teams of Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Malaysia in the tournament slated on January 22 to 27.
Leading Group A is defending champion Southern California Fukienese Association, an Asian-American squad composed of college players from the United States, along with Thailand national team as well as clubs Changsa Park Lane Snow Wolves and Hong Kong Xinlibao Bulls.
Members of SMART-Gilas led by coach Chot Reyes returned home Sunday after finishing sixth in the 24th Dubai International Basketball Tournament.
The team will leave for Hong Kong on Monday, with Gary David the only new addition to the squad.
The GlobalPort gunner was a member of the SMART-Gilas squad that won the 34th William Jones Cup last year.
Other PBA players who reinforced the national team in Dubai Jay-R Reyes and Ronjay Buenafe of Meralco and KG Canaleta of Air 21 will not be joining the squad in Hong Kong.
Returning to the national team for the weeklong competition are Kevin Alas, Garvo Lanete, RR Garcia, Matthew Rosser, Jake Pascual, Ronald Pascual, Greg Slaughter and Filipino-American recruits Justin Melton and Isaac Holstein.
Reyes said the competition is part of the training of members of the programs cadet pool, who are being eyed to form the core of the SMART-Gilas squad that will compete in the Southeast Asian Games this year.
Naturalized player Marcus Douthit will also join the trip.
The Philippines will take on Indonesia on Tuesday, Hong Kong the following day, and Malaysia on January 24. The top two teams in each group will advance to the crossover semifinal round
PH-Mighty Sports through to Merlion Cup finals after escaping Singapore Slingers - 1 day ago
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Philippines-Mighty Sports pulled off a tough 72-70 semifinal victory over hometown team Singapore Slingers to advance to the Merlion Cup finals on Saturday at the OCBC Arena in the city-state. Dewarick Spencer (193-G-82, college: Arkansas St., agency: Higher Vision Sports) fired 17 of his 29 points in the third quarter to pump life into Mighty Sports which, after a strong start, trailed by nine points in the third quarter. Filipino guards Kiefer Isaac Ravena (181-G/F-93) and Joseph Yeo (1... [read more]
Philippines-Mighty Sports pulled off a tough 72-70 semifinal victory over hometown team Singapore Slingers to advance to the Merlion Cup finals on Saturday at the OCBC Arena in the city-state. Dewarick Spencer (193-G-82, college: Arkansas St., agency: Higher Vision Sports) fired 17 of his 29 points in the third quarter to pump life into Mighty Sports which, after a strong start, trailed by nine points in the third quarter. Filipino guards Kiefer Isaac Ravena (181-G/F-93) and Joseph Yeo (183-G-83) also combined for five crucial points down the stretch that gave the Philippine club the lead for good. PH-Mighty Sports will take on the Shanghai Sharks led by former NBA player Fredette Jimmer (188-PG-89, college: BYU) for the title on Sunday in a matchup between the tournament's two unbeaten teams. PH-Mighty Sports started the game on a hot 7-0 run powered by slam dunks from Hamady N'diaye (212-C-87, college: Rutgers).. They finished the first quarter with a 21-15 lead. But the Slingers put the clamps on PH-Mighty Sports, limiting the Filipino club to just 12 points in the second quarter. The Slingers took a 36-33 at the break which they expanded to nine points, 44-35, in the early goings of the third frame. But just as the Slingers were about to pull away, Spencer woke PH-Mighty Sports up. He suddenly waxed hot on the floor, burying three triples and converting tough baskets to score 17 of the team's first 18 points in the third quarter. Yeo then scored a layup to complete the turnaround for PH-Mighty Sports which took a 53-46 lead. But the Slingers made their way back and trimmed their deficit to just two, 56-54, heading into the last quarter. It was a nip-and-tuck affair in the fourth period, with the teams exchanging leads. Big man Justin Howard gave the Slingers a 68-67 lead with just a minute left after shooting a surprise three-pointer off an awkward release. But Ravena countered it with a reverse layup. After a miss by the Slingers, Yeo then pulled up for a triple to push PH-Mighty Sports' lead to four, 72-68, with 36 seconds left. But the Slingers converted two free throws in the next play. Spencer then made a huge blunder in the inbound for a huge turnover that gave the Slingers a chance to take the last shot with just nine ticks left. However, the Slingers' Filipino import Jeff Viernes was called for steps in his drive to the basket, allowing PH-Mighty Sports to escape with the victory. Courtesy of: interaksyon.com
Quarterfinal action from the 2016 PBA Governors' Cup tonight saw sister Meralco and TNT gain separate tickets to the semifinals. Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon): MERALCO BOLTS over MAHINDRA ENFORCER, 105-82 The Meralco Bolts continued their mastery of the Mahindra Enforcer, trouncing the playoff first-timers for the second time in three days, 105-82, to clinch a semifinals berth in the PBA Governors' Cup Saturday at Ynares Center in Antipolo. Import Allen Durham tallied 24 po... [read more]
Quarterfinal action from the 2016 PBA Governors' Cup tonight saw sister Meralco and TNT gain separate tickets to the semifinals.
Game Capsules (adapted from Interaksyon):
MERALCO BOLTS over MAHINDRA ENFORCER, 105-82 The Meralco Bolts continued their mastery of the Mahindra Enforcer, trouncing the playoff first-timers for the second time in three days, 105-82, to clinch a semifinals berth in the PBA Governors' Cup Saturday at Ynares Center in Antipolo.
Import Allen Durham tallied 24 points and 16 rebounds while Chris Newsome added 19 markers to lead the Bolts who rallied from a 15-point deficit to pull off the blowout.
Cliff Hodge scored 14 points and Jared Dillinger 12 markers to help Meralco which just last Wednesday also rallied past Mahindra to seize the twice-to-beat in their playoff for the No.4 spot.
The win was Meralco's third straight over Mahindra which missed out on clinching an outright twice-to-beat after falling to the Bolts in their elimination round duel last September 11.
In the semifinals, Meralco will face the winner of the TNT KaTropa-Phoenix Fuel Master quarterfinal matchup.
James White finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Enforcer who, thanks to a 4-0 start, were able to appear in their first quarterfinals appearance in franchise history.
Lines of the Game: Allen Durham (MER) - 24pts, 16rebs, 6asts, 1blk, 3 triples, 7/14 FGs. James White (MAH) - 20pts, 10rebs, 1ast, 1stl, 1blk.
TNT KA TROPA over PHOENIX FUEL MASTERS, 136-124 Superstar guard Jayson Castro exploded for 42 points as he carried TNT KaTropa to the semifinals with a 136-124 win over the gutsy Phoenix Fuel Masters in the PBA Governors' Cup playoffs Saturday at Ynares Center in Antipolo.
Castro converted 14 out of 26 shots, made five out of 11 triples and sank nine out of 12 free throws. He also grabbed four rebounds and three assists-all in just 27 minutes of play.
The result booked TNT a semifinals date with sister team Meralco Bolts and completed the final four cast that will also see San Miguel and Ginebra battling in the other side of the bracket.
Castro was simply unstoppable on the floor, finishing daredevil drives to the basket and pulling up for jumpers when defenders fell asleep. He already had 29 points after the first two quarters.
Michael Madanly also had 17 points, while Ranidel De Ocampo and Ryan Reyes chipped in 16 apiece. Larry Fonacier had 13 and Kelly Williams contributed 12.
Eugene Phelps finished the game with 39 points and 17 boards for Phoenix.
Eric Dawson (ex Blackwater) agreed terms with Utah Jazz - 2 days ago
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Utah Jazz (NBA) inked 32-year old power forward Eric Dawson (206-116kg-84, college: Midwestern State, agency: Haylett Sports). He played in the summer at Blackwater in Filipino PBA league. In 6 games he recorded very impressive stats: 18.2ppg, 15.2rpg, 4.7apg, 2.3spg and 2.2bpg. The last season Dawson played at Paris-Levallois in ProA where in 22 games he averaged 10.8ppg, 6.4rpg, 2.4apg and 1.4spg. He has never been drafted by the NBA. Among other achievements Dawson received NBA D-Leagu... [read more]
Utah Jazz (NBA) inked 32-year old power forward Eric Dawson (206-116kg-84, college: Midwestern State, agency: Haylett Sports). He played in the summer at Blackwater in Filipino PBA league. In 6 games he recorded very impressive stats: 18.2ppg, 15.2rpg, 4.7apg, 2.3spg and 2.2bpg. The last season Dawson played at Paris-Levallois in ProA where in 22 games he averaged 10.8ppg, 6.4rpg, 2.4apg and 1.4spg. He has never been drafted by the NBA. Among other achievements Dawson received NBA D-League award and ALL NBA D-League Defensive 1st Team award back in 2012. He is a very experienced player. Dawson has quite traveled the world as his pro career brought him to eleven different countries on four different continents (Europe, Asia, Latin America and of course North America). Dawson has played previously professionally in China (Foshan and Heilongjiang), Dominican Rep., Iran (Petrochimi), Japan, Korea, Puerto Rico (Leones), NBA (Atlanta Hawks and San Antonio Spurs), France (Chalon/Saor), Philippines (Meralco Bolts), Dominican Republic (Metros de Santiago) and D-League (Austin Spurs). Worth to mention he played also at Eurobasket Summer League, which helped him to get the job in pro basketball. He attended Midwestern State until 2007 and it will be his tenth season in pro basketball.
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