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Locals step up as Gilas blasts Ivory Coast in pre-FIBA WC tune-up

Gilas and Ivory Coast took a photo together after the game. SBP
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--As expected, Jordan Clarkson made himself known in his first tune-up game for Gilas Pilipinas ahead of the FIBA World Cup, but the locals took over down the stretch as they clobbered Ivory Coast, 85-62, on Friday night behind the closed doors of the PhilSports Arena in Pasig.

Clarkson sizzled early on and scored nearly half of Gilas' first-quarter points--13 in particular--as they raced to a 27-24 lead against Ivory Coast.

However, as Ivory Coast began marking Clarkson, his teammates began providing significant production for Gilas as they sustained the lead and even pulled away in the fourth quarter by holding their visitors to just nine points while dropping 25.

Clarkson played the entire first half but only played for the first four minutes of the third quarter, also tallying six rebounds, one assist, and one steal, although he too had four turnovers.

June Mar Fajardo also tallied 13 points on 4-for-5 field goals and 5-for-6 free throws along with two rebounds.

In his first game back from a hand injury, Scottie Thompson had 11 points, four rebounds, five assists, and one block.

Kai Sotto tallied 10 points, going 5-for-6 from the field, four rebounds, two assists, and one block in his first tune-up game for Gilas.

Thirdy Ravena, Ray-Ray Parks, and Calvin Oftana took the day off for Gilas.

Bazoumana Kone and Moence Dadiet each tallied 12 points for Ivory Coast, which has played its last tune-up game and now shifts attention to the FIBA World Cup itself.

Box Scores:

Philippines 85-Clarkson 13, Fajardo 13, Edu 12, Thompson 11, Sotto 10, Ramos 7, Aguilar 6, Abando 5, Pogoy 4, Perez 3, Ravena 1, Malonzo 0, Newsome 0

Ivory Coast 62-Kone 12, Dadiet 12, Sidibe 8, Tape 6, V. Fofana 5, Zouzoua 5, Diabate 3, Daily 3, Mbulane 2, Abouo 2, Bah 2, Traore 2, M. Fofana 0

Quarterscores: 27-24, 42-38, 60-53, 85-62

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

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