Gilas Pilipinas' second half rampage downs Iraq in FIBA Asia Cup

Gilas Pilipinas vs Iraq FIBA Cup 2017 schedule: start time, tv channel, preview

At 2-0, Gilas is already assured of the No. 1 spot in the group and will advance to the quarterfinal round against the victor of the match between the second-ranked teams in Groups C and D, which at the moment, are Lebanon and Chinese Taipe respectively.

Fil-German Christian Standhardinger sat out last night's game because of nagging pain in his neck and shoulder while Calvin Abueva was carried back to the bench in the second quarter by teammates after hurting his left foot during a slip.

Should it continue rolling, Gilas Pilipinas should expect either powerhouse Iran, Lebanon or Chinese Taipei in the semifinals.

"The woes that plagued the Gilas frontline on Sunday was made even worse when 6'7" forward Raymond Almazan got plagued with fouls, leaving only 6'9" Japeth Aguilar as the sole big man for the team for long stretches of the game.

Carl Cruz continued his stellar play for Gilas, scoring 13 markers on 3-of-9 shooting from downtown. Gabe Norwood chipped in with an all-around performance of 10 points, seven rebounds, five assists and two blocks.

Gilas trailed by as many at 6 before Matthew Wright kickstarted Gilas' offense to turn things around to a take a one-point lead into halftime, 32-31.

Against the Qatari team, Gilas went 28-for-71 from the field, turned the ball over 17 times, and had little answer to Mansour Elhadary, who scored 23 points. Jayson Castro contributed six points.

Wright erupted for seven three-pointers to finish with 25 points while Cruz made 10 of his 13 points during the first half which saw Gilas take control of the contest and eventually produce its third straight win in the continental tournament.

The win avenged Gilas' loss to Qatar in the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea in the second round of the elims.

CHOT Reyes had a word of warning for his Philippines players, even as they celebrated with 2,000 Filipino fans in Lebanon.

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