Gilas Pilipinas falls short versus 3rd-ranked Argentina
MANILA, Philippines—It was a valiant effort but it just would not cut in.
Looking for a probable upset, Gilas Pilipinas fell short against Argentina, 85-81, during their group stage matchup at the 2014 Fiba World Cup in Sevilla, Spain, Tuesday early morning (Manila time).
Gilas Pilipinas faced the daunting task of putting down the third-best team in the world and long bombs from Jimmy Alapag in the late stages of the fourth period could have done it.
Argentina, however, reared its head and showed the 34th-ranked Philippines why they are part of the world’s elite.
Alapag cut the deficit to one, 82-81, with 2:09 remaining in the last half.
With both teams going scoreless for almost a minute, Andres Nocioni slugged it out against Andray Blatche and Marc Pingris in the paint for a rebounding battle, drawing a foul against the Filipino power forward to go to the line to shoot a couple of charities.
Nocioni split the free throws to put Argentina up 83-81 with 42 seconds remaining.
Jayson Castro then committed a monster of a blunder with a traveling violation, with 12 seconds remaining.
Nocioni then calmly put the game away to hand the Philippines its third loss in the tournament and give his country a 2-1 record.
Luis Scola had 19 points and seven rebounds for Argentina while Ranidel De Ocampo led Gilas with 18 points.
Andray Blatche notched a double-double for Gilas with 14 points and 15 boards while Alapag, who sparked a would-be rally in the fourth, had 15.
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