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Gilas holds off Spartak Primorye in tension-filled match

Terrence Romeo falls down after a Russian player threw the ball
at him during a bench-clearing incident.
Screen capture from TV5
By Ivan Saldajeno

TAIPEI--The Filipinos never back down in a highly-physical and at times emotional basketball game.

The Russian learned that the hard way on Tuesday.

Gilas Pilipinas survived a grit-and-grind affair with Spartak Primorye and won, 85-71, in their Jones Cup match at the Xinchuang Gymnasium.

Both the Philippine national team and the Russian club engaged in a rugged showdown that literally led to a bloodshed.

Sonny Thoss got caught by an elbow from Alimdzhan Fediuhin just two minutes into the game, and the Alaska center had to get some stitches on his head later.

Four minutes later, Terrence Romeo also saw blood coming from his mouth after another Russian player threw the ball at him following a confrontation between the GlobalPort guard and Aleksei Goliakhov. The said incident led to both teams leaving their respective benches and Coach Tab Baldwin threatening to pull out his team.

Gilas stayed in the game and pulled away in the second half to get its second win while handing Spartak its first defeat.

Ranidel De Ocampo had his best game from his return from an injury with 13 points, while Romeo, who averaged 20.5 points a game in the first two games, finished with 11.

Kostiantyn Glazyrin had a game-high 23 markers for the Russian side.

Box Scores:

Philippines 85–De Ocampo 13, Romeo 11, Abueva 10, Tautuaa 10, Ganuelas 10, Intal 8, Taulava 7, Rosario 6, Hontiveros 6, Alapag 3, Thoss 1, Ramos 0

Spartak Primorye 71–Glazyrin 23, Goliakhov 12, Uzinskii 11, Savelev 10, Ferorkhov 5, Fediushin 5, Ivanov 4, Zverokv 1

Quarterscores: 20-23, 43-40, 61-50, 85-71