Ildefonso-led Gilas Youth give world no. 9 Argentina a scare

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 01, 2019 08:50 AM
Ildefonso-led Gilas Youth give world no. 9 Argentina a scare
Photo courtesy of FIBA

Gilas Youth put forth a stronger showing in their second assignment in the 2019 FIBA Under-19 World Cup even without AJ Edu, but still surrendered a 72-77 decision to Argentina, early Monday morning (Philippine time) at Heraklion Indoor Sports Arena in Greece.

National University standout Dave Ildefonso caught fire for the Philippines with 22 points on top of 10 rebounds while 7-foot-2, 17-year-old Kai Sotto pounded in 17 markers, eight boards, and six blocks of his own.

It was those two, together with NU High steady hand Gerry Abadiano, who connived for the Filipinos' rumbling rally in the final frame, turning a 53-68 disadvantage into just 69-73 with 33.6 ticks to go.

That was the closest they could come, however, as Lucas Reyes dropped four of his 15 points the rest of the way to keep them at bay and keep them locked out of the win column through two tries.

Still, the close loss to the ninth-ranked Argentines may very well be a moral victory as it was Gilas Youth's first game sans 6-foot-10, 19-year-old Edu who, as per initial diagnosis, suffered an ACL tear and a meniscus tear to his right knee as well as a hairline fracture to the femur bone in his right leg.

The Filipinos get one whole day to prepare before closing out their group stages assignments against world no. 19 Russia, early Wednesday morning (Philippine time).

BOX SCORES

ARGENTINA 77 - Giordano 18, Farabello 15, Reyes 15, Caffaro 9, Ruesga 8, Marcos 5, Chapero 4, Fuente 3, Lugarini 0, Fernandez 0, Simondi 0.

PHILIPPINES 72 - Ildefonso 22, Sotto 17, Abadiano 9, Spencer 9, Tamayo 8, Amsali 4, Panopio 3, Torres 0, Chiu 0, Oczon 0, Fortea 0.

QUARTER SCORES: 22-15; 39-32; 58-51; 77-72.

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