Energen Pilipinas blasts Bahrain in Fiba AsiaBy Mark Giongco
MANILA, Philippines—Jerie Pingoy and Jay Alejandro snapped out of their slump in the second half to fuel Energen Pilipinas to a 99-72 drubbing of Bahrain Wednesday in the Fiba Asia under-18 tournament in Ulan Bator, Mongolia.
Pingoy sparked a third-quarter surge by the Philippines that erased a 14-point deficit it faced in the second quarter.
The five-foot-nine Pingoy scored all of his 19 points in the second half, with 10 coming in the pivotal third period. His back-to-back baskets finally gave the Nationals the lead, 58-54—a lead the Philippines never relinquished.
Alejandro had a team-high 23 points, including three straight triples to start the fourth period, one to counter every Bahrain basket. He also ended up scoring 19 points in the second half.
Pingoy and Alejandro may have led the Philippines, which moved in to a tie in the standings with fellow group leaders Iran and Chinese Taipei at 5-1, but it was a total team effort.
Hubert Cani and Rey Nambatac had 11 points each. Cani tallied majority of his points in the second period where he kept Bahrain from pulling away further.
The Nationals out-rebounded Bahrain, 42-25, but more impressive was the way they turned things around in the second half.
In fact, the Philippines outscored its total first half points with just its third-quarter output, 38-35.
Defense also pulled PH through as it held its opponent without a field goal in the last 6:23 of the third.
Ali Hassan Shukralla spelled trouble for the Philippines before eventually getting contained. Shukralla finished with 32 points, with most of his damage coming in the first half.
Despite the three-way tie in first place, the Philippines dropped to third in its group due to a tie-break which had Iran and Chinese Taipei in first and second place respectively.
And that puts PH in a tough spot going into the quarterfinals with either China or Korea as its possible opponent.