Gilas Pilipinas bounced back as they fended off a gallant stand by a physical Iraq team, 84-75, on Thursday following a heartbreaker against South Korea in the 39th William Jones Cup.
- Slow start: After shooting a woeful 1-of-26 from the outside against the Koreans, Gilas’ confidence took a hit as they came out flat in this game. The Iraquis zoomed to a seven-point lead before settling to a 19-15 tally at the end of the first period.
- Wright stuff: Matthew Wright hit two three-pointers to spark Gilas’ rally. The Nationals hit 7-of-21 three-pointers overall.
- Kobe dunk finally: Kobe Paras had his moment in this game. The 19-year old son of PBA Rookie-MVP Benjie Paras went off for a dunk in transition that helped Gilas take a 36-22 lead.
- Let’s get physical: The Iraquis proved to be no pushover as they waged a fightback behind their naturalized player Demario Mayfield’s 29 points and their strong, physical plays that tested the Cadets’ resolve. Iraq managed to close the gap down to six in the final minute but lost steam.
- Spread out offense: Mike Myers led the balanced attack with 16 points while Kiefer Ravena, RR Pogoy and Jio Jalalon also chipped in double figures for Gilas, who improved to 4-2.