We've gone gaga over basketball last Saturday. Gilas Pilipinas showed the world that we're one tough nut to crack although beaten last Saturday at the first elimination round of 2014 FIBA World Cup held in Seville Spain. I lost my voice shouting and cursing watching the media viewing party at Skinny Mike's Resto Bar in BGC sponsored by Alaxan FR with Fast Release Action #PusongPalaban #KatawangAlaxan with fellow blogger friends and my two sportswriters in school. It was hard not to scream at every score shot by Jimmy Alapag, Jeff Chan and Andre Blatche during the game against Croatia last Saturday. My students Nimrod and Jayson were busy writing notes and shouting.
Croats survived Gilas’ rage
by Nimrod Zedric Rubia (a 15 year-old sportswriter from Lagro HS)
Gilas Pilipinas almost bagged their first win, but Croatians didn't let that happen, 81-78, in the FIBA World Cup group phase yesterday at Seville, Spain. Croatia started powerful with back-to-back shots.
Jimmy Alapag and Jun Mar Fajardo teamed up to make a terrific play at the second quarter where Fajardo lay-upped a basket.
While making a run on the second quarter, Blatche suddenly limped his right leg, forcing Coach Chot Reyes to a timeout.
The “mighty mouse” Alapag shot a spirit-uplifting three and was fouled making it a four-point play. He made the free-throw.
While Jeff Chan shot an amazing buzzer beater with only two seconds on the game and shot clock.
“Umpisa pa lang, maganda na ang feel ko sa tira,”(At start, I feel good with my shots.)Chan said.
Chan again, started the third quarter with a booming three. But the Croats, stopped the progress of our Gilas with a 6-0 run.
Andray Blatche cut down the deficit to just four with a triple.
Jason Castro got a lead –cutting three, but he was called for a technical for flapping, that gave the Croatians two free throws and a possession.
Damir Markota of Croatia ended the quarter with a impossible buzzer beater three, 57-49.
Ranidel de Ocampo opened the quarter with a corner-three, and an And1 lay-up.
Jeff again, made a fortune changer three point shot. And Marc Pingris made a lay-up.
Gilas lead us to an 8-0 run to close us down to a deadlock, 66-66, in the closing seconds of the fourth quarter.
Jeff was fouled in the three point area, to give us a free throw, and he made it all. While Blatche made a hassle play with a lay-up.
Jason made a 2-point game saving shot that led us to an overtime.
Bogdanovic made a heart-breaking lay-up that could lead them to a win but Blatche didn't make it happen, he got a step back fade away.
Blatche again, was fouled and made two out of three free-throws, 75-73
Gabe Norwood shot nervously and didn’t make the shot, but he gained back with a monstrous block, however, he was fouled because of this and got a foul.
Blatche gave Philippines a chance to a miracle win with a triple, 79-78.
But we lost to the foul and the free throw that the Croats made.
Castro tried a three point jump shot and got a contact but the referee didn’t whistled.
"Even though we lost, we're keeping our heads up," Andray; the 6-foot-10 naturalized Filipino said.
The scores: Croatia (81) - Bogdanovic 26, Simon 12, Saric 10, Ukic 5, Markuta 5, Zoric 4, Rudez 4, Lafayette 4, Babic 3. Gilas Pilipinas (78) - Blatche 28, Chan 17, Pingris 10, Castro 6, De Ocampo 5, Alapag 4. Tenorio 2, Norwood 2, Fajardo 2, Lee 2, Aguilar 0. Quarterscores: 23-9; 37-31; 57-49; 71-71 (reg); 81-78.
Photo ganked from www.ph.sports.yahoo.com
Gilas Pilipinas proved the Filipino is not an easy team to beat in basketball and we're all hoping to score in the next games this week at FIBA World Cup. Let's all keep cheering because we all have #PusongPalaban #KatawangAlaxan. Alaxan FR has Fast Release formula which takes the pain away in less than four minutes. For more information, please visit https://www.facebook.com/AlaxanFR and follow @alaxan_fr on Twitter for more updates.