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Jordan Clarkson-less Gilas bows to Mexico in final pre-FIBA WC tune-up

Scottie Thompson took charge for Gilas amid the absence of Jordan Clarkson. Kennelf Monteza (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Gilas Pilipinas stayed close to Mexico in their last tune-up game before the FIBA World Cup but still end up falling at the raw end of an 84-77 result on Monday night at the PhilSports Arena in Pasig.

Despite resting Jordan Clarkson for the night, Gilas put up a gallant stand against the Mexicans, even taking the lead at some points of the game, the last at 59-55 midway through the third quarter.

However, Mexico finished the third on a 14-4 run to take a 69-63 lead and held off Gilas in the fourth to seal the win. In fact, after a 51-all halftime deadlock, Mexico held Gilas to just 26 second-half points.

Pako Cruz led Mexico with 18 points, going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc, one rebound, and three assists, while Paul Stoll added 17 points on 5-of-8 three-point shooting, five rebounds, four assists, and three steals.

Mexico made a living from long range in general, finishing 13-of-24 from three-point range.

Scottie Thompson led Gilas with 14 points, six rebounds, and five assists.

Save for the absence of Clarkson, coach Chot Reyes played almost the same roster that took on Montenegro on Sunday night, although Calvin Oftana did not get some playing time against Mexico.

Like the previous game, Ray-Ray Parks and Thirdy Ravena were not listed in the active lineup, which means both players did not see action in all three tune-up games which Reyes said would play an important factor in choosing the final 12-man Gilas lineup for the FIBA World Cup itself.

Box Scores:

Mexico 84-Cruz 18, Stoll 17, Jaimes 15, Ibarra 12, Bonilla 6, Giron 6, I. Gutierrez 4, Andriasi 3, Camacho 3, J. Gutierrez 0

Philippines 77-Thompson 14, Pogoy 9, Ramos 9, Malonzo 8, Sotto 8, Ravena 7, Newsome 6, Fajardo 6, Perez 4, Edu 3, Aguilar 3, Abando 0

Quarterscores: 31-27, 51-51, 69-63, 84-77

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