Ramos' perfect shooting night propels Gilas Pilipinas past Thailand

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Photo courtesy: FIBA Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers website

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 27) – A hot shooting night from Ateneo guard Dwight Ramos led Gilas Pilipinas to a commanding 93-61 win over Thailand in the FIBA Asia Cup 2021 Qualifiers on Friday at Manama, Bahrain.

Ramos hit a perfect 7-of-7 in the floor, including two three-point field goals, to finish with 20 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists for the Jong Uichico-mentored squad. He also converted all his four shots in the free-throw stripe.

La Salle big man Justine Baltazar and University of the Philippines Fighting Maroon Juan Gomez De Liaño both chipped in 12 points to give Gilas its second win in the tournament.

It was still a close affair in the first quarter as Gilas' offensive smarts were matched by the Thais' sweet-shooting triples courtesy of Wattana Suttisin, who hit three treys in the first 10 minutes of action. Thailand even led 14-12 in the middle of the quarter but Gilas came back to finish with a 21-19 lead.

“Fortunately, the game turned around sometime at the start of the second quarter. I think we had more depth than they had so the outcome of the game was decided somehow in the fourth quarter,” Uichico said after the game.

The Filipinos seized the opportunity during the second quarter when De Liaño fired three triples and capitalized on Thailand's turnovers as Gilas stretched their lead, 53-29, in halftime.

The Philippines got more solid contributions from the remaining Gilas players in the third and fourth canto as Gilas finished with a stellar 47.95% shooting on 35-of-73 field goals and seal their decisive victory.

Gilas also dominated Thailand in points from turnover (28-9), points in the paint (42-14), and bench points (37-18).

Montien Wongsawangtham spearheaded the Thais' effort with 17 points, while Nakorn Jaisanuk and Suttisin contributed 12 and 10 points respectively for the Manid Niyomyindee-coached squad.

The two Southeast Asian countries will face again on Monday at 9 p.m. (Philippine time).

The scores:

PHILIPPINES (93) – Ramos 20, Baltazar 12, De Liaño Ju. 12, De Liaño Ja. 9, Suerte 9, Nieto Mi. 8, Go 6, Nieto Ma. 4, Cariño 4, Navarro 4, Paras 3, Ildefonso 2.

THAILAND (61) – Wongsawangtham 17, Jaisanuk 12, Suttisin 10, Langsui 6, Jakrawan 5, Chungyampin 5, Muangboon 4, Klaewnarong 2, Lakhan 0, Ghogar 0.

Quarterscores: 21-19, 53-29, 75-43, 93-61.