SEA Games: Gilas pulls away to beat Indonesia, faces Thais for gold medal
MANILA, Philippines — Gilas Pilipinas shifted into high gear in the second half and left Indonesia in the dust for a 97-70 win to enter the gold medal round of the 30th Southeast Asian Games men’s basketball competition Monday night at Mall of Asia Arena.
The Philippines went on a blistering run in the third quarter thanks to a barrage of 3-pointers by Matthew Wright and Chris Ross.
“It took us by halftime to figure out how hard we had to come out and play against this team because this team really came to play and they were impressive,” said national team head coach Tim Cone.
“The first two threes of Chris Ross in the third quarter kinda knocked the lid out of our basket and it suddenly looked open everybody can knock down shots,” Cone added.
Wright and Ross each hit three 3-pointers in the third quarter where the Filipinos outscored Indonesians, 39-17, to take a 78-45 lead heading into the final frame.
Wright scored 13 points and had eight assists while Ross finished with 11 points, five rebounds and six assists.
Gilas’ slew of big men also made their presence felt with Vic Manuel scoring 12 points off the bench on 6-of-8 shooting from the field while Christian Standhardinger posted 14.
Gilas plays fellow unbeaten team Thailand for the gold Tuesday night at 8:15 p.m.
“They play different defenses so it’s going to be difficult to execute. They’re gonna be very disruptive but we’re gonna have to turn around and make sure we’re defending them,” Cone said of Thailand.
“I think if we can defend them first and get out on the open court before they can get their zone set up or get their press set up we’re gonna be in good shape but it’s easier said than done.”
The Philippines is actually going for a SEA Games sweep in basketball with the Gilas women also taking on Thailand at 6 p.m.
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