By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
THE run of Batang Gilas at the FIBA U17 Basketball World Cup came to an end on Thursday when it was routed by Canada, 102-62, in their Round of 16 encounter at the at Newell’s Old Boys in Rosario, Argentina.
Showing the form that made it the world number 2-ranked team, Canada proved to be too much for the Philippines (#34) as it dominated from start to finish en route to the huge win that thrust the team to the quarterfinals of the tournament.
The Canadians raced to a 14-0 lead early in the opening quarter to set the tone for how the contest would go.
Gerry Abadiano broke through for Batang Gilas with three free throws made at the 5:18 mark to make it 14-3 before the team saw Canada build a 26-7 lead at the end of the first period.
The second quarter saw Batang Gilas scoring better but unfortunately so did its opponent, outscoring the former, 25-19, to create further distance, 51-26, by the halftime break.
With the team pretty much in control, Canada spent the rest of the way staving off the fightback attempts of the Philippines, and successfully did so, limiting Batang Gilas to just 36 points in the third and fourth periods combined as compared to its 51 points.
Abadiano had another solid game for the Philippines with 19 points with Kai Sotto adding 16 points, eight rebounds and two blocks.
Matthew-Alexander Moncrieffe paced the victorious Canadians with 22 points followed by Benjamin Krikke with 13.
Luka Sakota is the other Canada player in double digits with 10 points.
With the win, Canada advanced to the quarterfinals where it will face world number 9 Australia.
Batang Gilas, for its part, slumped to its fourth defeat in as many games and exited sans a win to show for.
Apart from Abadiano and Sotto, other Batang Gilas players were Rence Padrigao, Terrence Fortea, Mclaude Guadana, Jose Miguel Pascual, RC Calimag, Yukien Andrada, Carl Tamayo, Joshua Lazaro, Shaun Chiu and Raven Cortez.
Coaches were Michael Oliver and Josh Reyes.