KHATE Castillo rose to the occasion as Gilas Pilipinas national women's basketball team upended India, 74-70, to remain in Division A at the FIBA Women Asia Cup early Friday at the Prince Hamza Sport Hall in Amman, Jordan.
Castillo drained seven triples out of 11 attempts to lead the Philippines to its first victory in four games. The Philippines finished the tournament in seventh place and avoided being relegated to Division B.
The 5-foot-4 Castillo came to the rescue for Gilas Women on the face of an Indian comeback, as they trimmed down a 67-56 deficit to two points, 65-67 following a Stephy Nixon jumper at the 3:30 mark of the fourth period.
Castillo, who also grabbed three rebounds, gave the Philippines the much-needed breather, as the former La Salle University guard drilled back-to-back three-pointers to give the Philippines a 73-65 cushion with 2:38 left and never looked back.
"I'm very happy with the girls. They didn't stop competing. I know they played together and as a team. A good victory for us," said Philippine head coach Pat Aquino, whose Gilas team suffered lopsided defeats against China, Australia and Chinese Taipei before beating India.
Castillo, who shot an overall 7-of-12 clip from the field, totaled 22 points in the contest. Veteran scorer Janine Pontejos also scored 22 points for the Philippines behind a 9-of-22 shooting.