Justin Brownlee, Gilas Pilipinas knock off Indonesia to set up gold medal game vs Cambodia
MANILA, Philippines—Struggling to recover from a shaky start, Gilas Pilipinas needed to buckle down in the final frame to dethrone Indonesia, 84-76, in the 32nd Southeast Asian Games in Cambodia.
Justin Brownlee erupted for 15 points in the payoff period to bring the Philippines closer to reclaiming the gold medal. The do-it-all forward finished with 34 points, nine rebounds, and five assists in a timely return to form.
Gilas Pilipinas advanced to the winner-take-all against host Cambodia on Tuesday at 4 p.m. (Manila time) also at Morodok Techo National Stadium in Phnom Penh.
“First of all, credit to the players for sticking with it. They did not give up,” national coach Chot Reyes said as he tried to catch his breath during a chat with reporters after the contest.
“Indonesia’s a hell of a team, man. They’re a real team. They got together for a long time, they know each other very well, and their system is very fluid. But like I’ve said, we just pay tribute to the guys for their grit and for not giving up.”
Brandon Ganuelas-Rosser chipped in 13 points, Arvin Tolentino 10, while Marcio Lassiter and Jerom Lastimosa nine each in the gutsy stand against the team that knocked Gilas Pilipinas from its lofty perch last year in Vietnam.
Lester Prosper looked solid in the first half, with 21 points built on an 8-for-8 shooting. But the former PBA import was hardly a factor in the final period where Gilas mounted its rally.
Other naturalized players Anthony Beane, Jr. and Dame Diagne finished with 12 and 9 points, respectively, as Timnas now tries to salvage a bronze medal against Thailand also set Tuesday.
“It was kind of discouraging, the three-pointer Beane to end the half, (Brandon) Jawato at the end of the third,” Reyes recalled.
“But we kept reminding the players and the coaches. Coach Tim (Cone) was reminding [everyone] to stay positive and I think that’s what happened. We just stayed with our stuff and in the end, we were able to pull it out,” he went on.
“Just grit on our part.”
Philippines (84) – Brownlee 34, Ganuelas-Rosser 13, Tolentino 10, Lassiter 9, Lastimosa 9, Newsome 4, Ross 2, Perez 2, Standhardinger 1, Phillips 0.
Indonesia (76) – Prosper 26, Beane 12, Prastawa 9, Jawato 8, Gemilang 6, Kokodiptura 3, Kosasih 2, Saputera 1, Arighi, Teja 0.
Quarterscores: 34-20, 45-38, 65-60, 84-76.
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