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Gilas women newcomer Berberabe gets rave reviews from coach

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Gilas women newcomer Berberabe gets rave reviews from coach
Stefanie Berberabe in the 31st Southeast Asian Games
Philstar.com / Luisa Morales

HANOI — The Gilas Pilipinas women's basketball team received a shot in the arm with the addition of Filipino-American guard Stefanie Berberabe to the roster in its title retention bid here at the 31st Southeast Asian Games.

An experienced hoops player from the NAIA in the US, Berberabe gave a different dimension to the game for the Filipina cagers.

And in her first official game doning the Gilas jersey against Indonesia on Monday, Berberabe made her presence felt.

Coming off the bench in the 93-77 win, Berberabe added four points, three rebounds, three assists and two steals.

"[She's] Solid. [A] solid defender, solid director in the court. So fast," Gilas women head coach Pat Aquino said after the game.

"She's really the lightning [of the team]. 'Kidlat' ang tawag namin sa kanya," he quipped.

For Berberabe, she believes that her playing style also fit well in Aquino and Gilas women's system, which has enabled her to contribute in multiple ways.

"I think a lot of my game is speed, hustle, and grittiness so it works really well with our team's system," she said.

Still, Berberabe and the rest of Gilas women are not letting their guard down as the competition rolls on.

"This is just one game, instead we're taking it one game at a time and we're really excited," she said.

Gilas women, who are aiming to clinch back-to-back gold medals in the SEA Games, play again on Wednesday where they face 2019 SEA Games silver medalist Thailand in a rematch of their gold medal duel three years ago.

Gametime is 10 a.m. (Manila time) at the Thanh Tri Gymnasium.

BASKETBALL

GILAS WOMEN

SEA GAMES

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