Gilas Pilipinas gets back at Senegal in China pocket tournament | Inquirer Sports

Gilas Pilipinas gets back at Senegal in China pocket tournament

/ 10:33 PM August 06, 2023

AJ Edu

FILE–Gilas Pilipinas prospect AJ Edu. –FIBA BASKETBALL

AJ Edu and Kiefer Ravena came through in the clutch for the Philippines as Gilas Pilipinas got back at Senegal, 75-63, in the Heyuan WUS International Basketball Tournament in China on Sunday night.

Edu and Ravena hit back-to-back triples in the final 1:30 of the contest at Heyuan Sport Gymnasium, virtually taking the fight out of the Lions who were trying their darndest to mount a comeback.

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Ray Parks Jr. was just as big, greasing the fightback in the payoff frame to overhaul a 47-53 deficit.

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Gilas Pilipinas lost to Senegal, 72-64, Friday night.

Edu, the other big man in the training squad and a close pal of Kai Sotto, has been on a tear since getting cleared for full-contact play. He played for Gilas in the closed-door friendlies against the vaunted Ateneo Blue Eagles and the red-hot Magnolia Hotshots late last July.

CJ Perez led the scorers with 14 points, while Edu finished with 13 points. Dwight Ramos had 12 while June Mar Fajardo chipped in 11 in the effort.

Jean Jacques Boissy starred for Senegal with 16 points, while Youssoupha Birima Fall added nine more in the Lions’ stand.

The Philippines, which rose to 2-1 in the short meet being used to prime for the World Cup later this month, will try to repeat against Iran on Monday night at Xiaoqing Sport Center.

Gilas is expected to be at full strength this week with Jordan Clarkson scheduled to arrive around Aug. 8 and Kai Sotto joining the preps a few days after.

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The Nationals are also scheduled to play Montenegro on Aug. 20 and Mexico on Aug. 21 for the final days of its coalescing for the global showcase.

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The Philippines is bunched with the Dominican Republic, Angola and then world No. 10 Italy in the group phase of the quadrennial event that will also dangle a slot into the Paris Olympic Games next year.

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