The Philippine Under-18 national basketball team extended their winning streak to three after defeating Malaysia, 87-68, in the 2016 Southeast Asian Basketball Association (SEABA) U18 Championship in Medan, Indonesia on Monday evening.
Coming off a dominant 133-52 victory over Laos on Sunday, the Philippines overcame the early lead by their rivals to record their third straight win in the competition.
Gian Mamuyac led the Filipinos with 18 points off a 61 percent shooting performance in the field plus five rebounds, five assist and two steals.
The Malaysians established an early 11-21 lead in the game following a three-point play by Ming Fong Chin in the 3:05 minute mark.
The Batang Gilas retaliated going into the final minutes of the opening quarter to place themselves within striking distance, 22-24.
The Philippines finally bridged the gap with 9:04 minutes left in the second quarter following a two-point jumper by Mamuyac bringing the score to 24-24.
The Filipinos intensified their offense to post a 46-40 advantage during the midgame intermission.
Malaysia’s Kah An Soong spearheaded his team’s counteroffensive to put themselves just 11 paces behind the Filipinos, 55-44, at the 4:04 mark of the third canto.
With just 10 minutes left in the game, the Philippines started to pull away beefing up its lead to a substantial 66-52. Batang Gilas sustained their fast-paced offensive until the dying moments of the match to hand the Malaysians their second loss in three games.
Josh Sinclair notched an impressive double-double output of 14 points and 11 assists plus four assists while Rendell Lee contributed nine points for the Philippines.
Jonas Tibayan also had a notable game, finishing with 11 markers and eight boards while Theo Flores and Jolo Mendoza had six and five points, respectively.
Evan Nelle, John Bahio and Fran Yu chipped in eight points each for Batang Gilas.
Despite an impressive 22 points and six boards, Malaysian skipper Soong was unable to power his squad over the tough Filipinos.
The Philippines have now tightened their grip on the top spot of the standings with an unbeaten record of three wins with just two more games to play.