Gilas II bows to Qatar, settles for fourth

Smart Gilas Pilipinas fell prey to the Qataris' hot shooting in the fourth quarter to settle for fourth place in the 4th FIBA Asia Cup in Tokyo, Japan earlier today. From a tight 61-54 edge midway in the fourth period, Qatar unleashed five triples en route to a convincing 79-63 triumph to salvage third spot.

It was the second straight time that the Philippine squad lost to Qatar in the battle for third in this tournament. In 2010, a Douthit-less Gilas I also succumbed to Qatar in this tournament held in Beirut a day after a grueling bout with the home team and eventual champion Lebanon.

Only two locals scored for Gilas in the payoff period, with Gary David hitting nine markers and Jared Dillinger adding six. From a 55-48 count to start the last quarter, Qatar dominated the rest of the game, clobbering the Filipinos, 24-15. Mohd Yousuf Mohammed led the Gulf champions with 17 points, while naturalized player Clinton Johnson III chipped in 16.

The taller Qataris also proved steadier from long distance, burying nine triples out of 27 tries as opposed to Gilas' two of 18. The winning team also won the battle of the boards, 47-31, and had more assists, 12-8.

Marcus Douthit, who sprained his ankle late in the second quarter, still topscored for the Philippines with 17 points, on top of 10 rebounds and 2 blocks. David finished with 15, while Dillinger and Norwood added 12 and 10 respectively.

The Nationals lost to Iran, 60-77, in the semis, in less than 24 hours before facing Qatar.