The Philippines came out of the gates firing and never looked back as they manhandled Syria, 109-55, for a respectable fifth-place finish in the 2018 Asian Games men’s basketball tournament in Jakarta.
Jordan Clarkson (29 points, six assists and four rebounds) and Christian Standhardinger (27 points, 15 boards) spearheaded the Philippine attack once more as the two combined 56 points — a point more than their foes’ total scoring output for the game.
Asi Taulava added 11 points — including three three-pointers in the first quarter alone — while Stanley Pringle finished with 10.
It was a clinic from the get-go as the Filipinos shot a blistering 7-for-10 from downtown and exploded for 38 points in the opening period while holding the Syrians to just a 16.
In the second quarter, the nationals slowed and mustered just 22 points, but the gap proved to be already way too much as they erected a comfortable 26-point lead at the half, 60-34.
Tarek Aljabi tallied 23 points and was the only player to score in double-figures for the losing side.
The Philippines dominated every facet as they shot 55 percent for the game and torched Syria (31 percent from the field, 4-for-28 from downtown) with 15 treys (38 percent). They also looked more cohesive as they dished more assists (35-13), and they won the battle on the boards (67-39).
The Philippines’ campaign in this edition of the continental games is an improvement from its performance in Incheon back in 2014, where Gilas Pilipinas finished seventh.
This was also the country’s best finish in 16 years, where the national team placed fourth in Busan.
Philippines (109) – Clarkson 29, Standhardinger 27, Taulava 11, Pringle 10, Yap 9, Belga 6, Tiu 5, Erram 5, Ahanmisi 3, Lee 2, Norwood 2, Almazan 0.
Syria (55) – Aljabi 23, Bakar 9, Saddir 6, Alhamwi 6, Al Ghamian 6, Kasaballi 3, Alosh 2, Khouri 0, Khyyata 0, Idelbi 0, Alshaikh 0, Kassas 0.