Gilas girls lose to towering Samoans, relegated to battle for bronze in shock upset

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Gilas girls lose to towering Samoans, relegated to battle for bronze in shock upset
Naomi Panganiban

MANILA, Philippines — The Gilas Pilipinas youth girls team will not be promoted to Division A after falling flat in the semifinal of the FIBA U16 Women's Asian Championship Division B against Samoa, 73-88, at Prince Hamza in Amman, Jordan on Wednesday.

A well-adjusted Samoa team flexed their height over the Gilas girls, who were also missing their 3-point shot.

At the end of the opening quarter, the Philippines were only down seven, 18-25.

But the Samoans continued to lord over the Gilas girls in the paint, while hitting their own 3-pointers to balloon the lead to 23, 53-30.

Though Gilas tried their hand at getting back in the game, the offense just wouldn't come for the Filipinas. The most Samoa led was at 27 points, 59-32.

The Gilas girls cut it to just 13, 61-74, with 7:35 ticks left in the game after a Kristan Yumul three, but the comeback fell short.

Naomi Panganiban led Gilas in the losing effort with 15 points while Yumul added 13 markers.

Ava Fajardo also added 14 points.

Kira-May Filemu paced Samoa with 36 points. Azaleeah Oloapu chipped in 18 points.

The loss relegates Gilas to the bronze medal match set tomorrow against the loser of the other semifinal between Lebanon and Syria.

Because only the winner of the tournament gets promoted to Division A, Gilas will be staying in Division B for the time being.

The Scores:

SAMOA 88 -- Filemu 36, Oloapu 18, Tutani 11, Manumaleuga 9, Keresoma 6, Hiko 4, Gasu 2, Talosaga 2, Brown 0, Kiliva 0, Hogben 0, Walshe 0.
PHILIPPINES 70 -- Panganiban 15, Fajardo 14, Yumul 13, Ramos 8, Nolasco 8, Lopez 6, Patricio 4, Villarin 3, Medina 2, Elson 0, Nair 0.

Quarters: 25-18, 53-30, 72-53, 88-70.




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