Gilas Pilipinas falls to sizzling Chinese TaipeiBy Celest R. Flores
MANILA, Philippines—Torched by the Taiwanese’ hot shooting, Smart Gilas Pilipinas fell to Chinese Taipei, 79-84, Saturday for its first setback in the preliminaries of the 2013 Fiba Asia Championships.
Taiwan rode on a hot start in the fourth, wiping off a 13-point deficit with a blistering 19-4 run, anchored on Cheng-Ju Lu and Chih-Chieh Lin’s solid marksmanship.
Lu and Lin combined for nine of the Taiwanese’ 15 triples—four of which coming in the fourth quarter—which ultimately keyed in the Filpinos’ doom.
“I should’ve done a good job rotation our players. That’s the story of the ball game,” said head coach Chot Reyes.
Larry Fonacier uncorked five triples, four in the third quarter alone, to lead the Filipinos with 21 points while Marcus Douthit added 16 points and 10 boards.
But after stretching the gap to 68-55 at the end of third quarter, Gilas Pilipinas yielded eight straight points in just two and half minutes allowing Taiwan to gain steam.
Wen-ting Tseng first gave Chinese-Taipei the lead, 74-72, with 4:09 left but the Philippines still regained upper hand after Marcus Douthit’s two freethrows, 77-75, with 2:19 left.
Tseng and Lu then uncorked back-to-back cold blooded triples to give Taiwan the lead for good.
“I told my players to never give up. Lin told the team at the end of third we’re not finished. Just keep on scoring then maybe we’ll have a chance,” said Taipei’s head coach Chin-Che Hsu.
Lu and Lin scored 22 and 20 points, respectively, for Taiwan.