Nha Trang City, Vietnam – The FIBA U16 Championship is in its knockout stages. The Philippines is paired with Group E 4th placer IRAQ U16 in the quarterfinals. The winner will face Korea who earlier beat Indonesia.
The Philippines started with Rodolfo Alejandro III, Michael Jay Javelosa, Tomas Gabriel Ramos, Adven Jess Diputado, and Renzar Henry Asilum. Iraq countered with a combination of Mohammed Abdulqaer, Kyhan Saeed, Ismael Ismael, Karrar Hamzah, and Ahmed Razzaq. Alejandro scored the first 4 points of the game to give the Philippines an early 4-0 lead. Hamzah scores the first points for the WABA champions Iraq, 4-2 for PHL. A 9-0 blast by the Philippines initiated by Javelosa stretched the lead to 13-2. Javelosa scored 5 points in the run. Farid Mahdi finally stopped the bleeding for Iraq with a basket, 4-13. Alejandro makes the first 3 point basket in the game to extend the lead to 16-4 with 4:20 left in the quarter. The Philippines outscored Iraq 14-5 to finish the first quarter with a 30-9 lead. Reserves Jordan Timothy Heading, Kyles Jefferson Lao, and Rashleigh Paolo Rivero spearheaded the attack in the latter part of the opening period.
Bahaa Sabri opened the second quarter for Iraq with a basket to cut the lead to 19, 30-11. Janhubert Angelo Cani made the first basket for the Filipinos in the quarter to bring back the lead to 21. Lao and Hamzah exchanged baskets, 34-13. Three point play by Lao off an Ismael foul gave the Philippines its biggest lead at 24, 37-13. Iraq made an 8-0 blast orchestrated by Razzaq to cut the lead to 16 at 37-21. Cani doused the rally with a shot from downtown, 40-21. Razzaq answered with a 3 to cut the lead again, 40-24. The two teams were practically even at the end of the second period as the Philippines still led 51-34.
Sabri opened the scoring once again in the second half with a tweener, 51-36. He scored again before Asilum scored his first basket of the game. Alejandro splits his free throws to extend the lead to 16 for the SEABA Champ Philippines 54-38. Ramos added another basket to extend the lead to 56-38. A 14-4 run by Iraq cut the lead to just 8, 60-52. Hamzah was instrumental in the run with 2 triples. Cani capped the scoring in the quarter with a 2-point shot to bring back the lead to ten at 62-52.
Iraq started the final 10 minutes with a 4-0 blast with baskets by Ismael Ismael and Dhulfiqar Ali, 62-56. Javelosa and Ismael exchanged scores to have the game at 64-58 still for the Philippines. Javelosa and Ismael in a virtual shoot out as they exchange 2 point shots once again, 66-60. A 4-0 run by the Philippines brings back the lead to 10. Diputado and Ramos were the scorers. 4:42 left in the match. Ball on the Philippines hands after Hamzah was charge for an offensive foul on Diputado. Javelosa travelled in the ensuing possesion to give the ball back to Iraq but Adbulqaer gave the Philippines back the ball after a bad pass. The Philippines scored a three by Asilum to bring the lead to 13 with 3:11 left. Hamzah nailed a three, 73-63. Javelosa made 1 of 2 free throws 74-63. Razzaq for three! 74-66. Asilum answered with a 2 point shot to bring back the lead to ten at 76-66. Sabri and Javelosa scored, still a ten point lead by the Philippines 78-68. Iraq forced to foul to stop the time and Javelosa obliged with 2 misses. Ali misses and Asilum is sent to the free throw line. He nailed both charities to extend the lead to 12, 80-68. Rivero entered the game for Javelosa. Iraq could not buy a basket. Time down to 33 seconds. Ramos fouled Ismael and sent him to the charity stripe. Ismael only made one 69-80. Asilum and Caracut made one free throw each for the final tally. The Philippines won 82-69.
The boy of Olsen Racela will have a chance to better their standing in the 1st edition of the FIBA Asia U16 Championship. The WABA Champions Iraq were a big test to them as they almost gave away the game. The 3-point shooting of Iraq kept them in the game as they made 9 baskets from beyond the arc. The Philippines manage to pull through behind the timely hits by guard Renzar Henry Asilum. The PHL U16 has to improve their 3 point shooting and perimeter defense to be able to beat perennial heartbreakers Korea. They also need to practice their free throws as games in the semifinals and finals are expected to be closer than the previous rounds.
- 2nd FIBA Asia U16 Championships: Round 2 Day 3 Recap (10-24-2011), CHN and PHL top respective groups (caloysports.wordpress.com)
- Energen Pilipinas handily beats Saudi U16; Asilum and Diputado scores 14 apiece (cebulive.wordpress.com)
- 2nd FIBA Asia U16 Championship Round 2: Philippines beat Japan, tops Group F (caloysports.wordpress.com)
- 2nd FIBA Asia U16 Championships: 2nd Round Day 2 Recap, PHL cruises past KSA (caloysports.wordpress.com)
- Henry Asilum makes it to the Energen Pilipinas Under-16 Youth Team (cebulive.wordpress.com)