Gilas Pilipinas comes back from being back by as many as 22 points to pull within ten points, but Lebanon maintains their game in the final seconds.
On July 13, the Philippines lost to Lebanon 95-80 in the Istora Stadium in Indonesia as their FIBA Asia Cup campaign got off to a bad start. The Philippines’ fourth-quarter resurgence lost momentum.
Hayk Gyokchyan contributed 19 points and 8 rebounds, while Wael Arakji led Lebanon with 20 points and 4 assists as they survived the Philippines onslaught.
With less than five minutes to go, a 14-1 run by Tamayo and Belangel allowed them to cut their 60-82 gap to just 9 points. Tamayo scored 7 of his 15 points during this stretch. However, Gyokchyan and Arakji scored back-to-back three-pointers as the Cedars easily won and tied with New Zealand for first place in Group D.
Belangel led all scorers in the defeat with 17 points, adding 3 assists and 2 steals, while Ray Parks tallied 15 points in his comeback for the national squad while shooting 4-of-7 from beyond the arc. Parks put the Filipinos inside striking range early in the third stanza with a pair of three-pointers to make it 45-49, but Gyokchyan sank 3 consecutive triples late to put the Lebanese ahead 79-58. Thirdy Ravena, who had a brutal tumble in the second half that left him with a cut over his right eye, managed to score 10 points and grab 5 rebounds for Gilas Pilipinas as well.
Philippines head coach Chot Reyes said:
“I thought we made a great run. We never quit even we were down by 22 points in the fourth”.
When the younger Ravena attempted to block, Arakji accidentally pushed him, causing him to fall face first and require assistance from medical staff to leave the court. Jonathan Arledge, a naturalised big man, contributed 19 points, 6 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 2 steals for Lebanon.
When Gilas Pilipinas faces India (0-1) on Friday, July 15, it hopes to avoid falling to sole last place in Group D.
22-27, 46-39, 79-58, 95-80
Arakji 20, Arledge 19, Gyokchyan 19, Darwich 10, Khayat 7, Chamoun 6, Hadidian 6, Ezzedine 5, Mansour 3, Mehzer 0, Zeinoun 0.
Belangel 17, Parks 15, Tamayo 15, T. Ravena 10, Chiu 6, K. Ravena 5, Erram 4, Abando 4, Navarro 4, Abarrientos 0, Quiambao 0.