Gilas trounces Meralco in tuneup clash

Gilas and Meralco shake hands after the game won by the former. Ivan Saldajeno
By Ivan Saldajeno

PASIG--Gilas Pilipinas triumphed over Meralco in a tuneup game with a 100-82 rout at the Meralco Gym on Friday.

In its last day here before flying to Doha, the Nationals showed its readiness for the final stage of the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers by punishing the Bolts in the third quarter.

After slowly getting its offensive groove in the second frame, Gilas went full speed in the third, outscoring Meralco, 28-14, to take an 83-59 lead entering the fourth.

Gilas even stretched its lead to as high as 28 late in the fourth before Meralco ended the game with 10 straight points.

"We'd like to thank Meralco for making themselves available for our only tuneup game. At least even without Andray [Blatche], we've seen that the guys are blending well," said Coach Yeng Guiao after the game.

RR Pogoy scored 21 points, while Marcio Lassiter added 14, 10 coming in the pivotal third quarter, for Gilas, which according to Guiao will leave for the Qatari capital Saturday morning.

Gilas will face Qatar there on Feb. 22 (Philippine Time).

Reynel Hugnatan made 13 markers for Meralco, while Nico Salva and Baser Amer each chipped in 12.

Box Scores:

Philippines 100-Pogoy 21, Lassiter 14, Fajardo 14, Barroca 11, Rosario 10, Aguilar 6, Ravena 5, Thompson 5, Norwood 4, Castro 4, Almazan 4, Erram 2

Meralco 82-Hugnatan 13, Salva 12, Amer 12, De Ocampo 11, Hodge 9, Newsome 9, Jackson 4, Pinto 4, Canaleta 4, Caram 2, Jamito 2, Quinto 0, Dillinger 0

Quarterscores: 23-21, 55-45, 83-59, 100-82

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