Day 3 of the 2012 FIBA Asia Cup

Gabe Norwood and the Pinoys continue to coast after
beating the Uzbeks on Day 3.

The Philippines never really broke a sweat to dispose of the Uzbeks on Day 2 of competition at the 2012 FIBA Asia Cup in Ota City, Japan. The Pinoys, however, are in danger of dropping to 2nd place in Group A after the Lebanese blew the Chinese out of the water. Iran, meanwhile, tied Japan for a share of Group B’s top spot after they rallied in OT to beat Qatar, and Taiwan finally got a W after blasting the Indians.

TAIWAN over INDIA, 113-88
Jet Chang and Taiwanese-American Doug Creighton paired up for 35 points to lead Coach Hsu Chin-Che’s wards to win #1 in their Tokyo campaign. The dynamic duo combined with Lin Chih-Chieh for 10 of Taiwan’s 16 triples. The EABA squad shot 55% overall from beyond the arc, negating the size advantage of India. Four Indians scored 18 or more points for Coach Kumar Chansoria with Vishesh Bhriguvanshi leading the way with 20 markers. This is the SABA champs’ third loss, and with Japan up next, it seems like they’ll go back home winless.

Tien Lei helped Taiwan finally nail a victory
in the FIBA Asia Cup.

Vishesh Bhriguvanshi goes underhand
against the Taiwan D.

TPE 113 – Chang 20, Creighton 15, Lin 13, Lee 12, Tien 12, Mao 9, Tseng 8, Su 6, Chen SC 6, Chen HA 6, Wu 4, Lu 2
IND 88 – Bhriguvanshi 20, Grewal 18, Singh Al 18, Pethani 18, Singh J 5, Singh Y 5, Brar 2, Singh R 2, Singh At 0, Kaushik 0
QS: 31-24, 58-41, 91-58, 113-88

Jeff Chan hit four triples on his way to 20 points in leading the Philippines past CABA team Uzbekistan. Chan, who laid a big fat egg against the Lebanese on Day 2, finally found his stride, connecting on 8 of his 15 field goal attempts to help the Pinoys race to a big first half lead they would never relinquish. Only Jared Dillinger registerd double-digits outside of Chan’s production, but Coach Chot Reyes didn’t need a lot of scoring form his big guns today. Instead, the multi-titled former PBA coach let some of his second and third stringers see a lot of burn. Most notable among these were Jay-R Reyes and Matt Ganuelas Rosser, who combined for 15 points and 15 rebounds. Rosser also dished out 4 assists and had a nice breakaway jam off a steal. Vyacheslav Denisov and Samender Juginisov led the Uzbeks with 16 and 12 points respectively. Coach Oleg Levin’s posse is still assured of entering the second round due to their win over Macau on Day 2.

The revamped Team Pilipinas squad continues to
impress its fans in Tokyo.

Shuhrat Tangrikulov tries to shoot
over Jay-R Reyes.

PHI 85 – Chan 20, Dillinger 10, Douthit 9, Rosser 8, Reyes 7, Fonacier 7, David 7, Villanueva 6, De Ocampo 5, Norwood 4, Tenorio 2, Thoss 0
UZB 50 – Denisov 16, Juginisov 12, Kozlov 6, Yahin 6, Rahimov 6, Tangrikulov 2, Nuraliev 2, Nabiev 0, Timofeev 0, Safarov 0, Kadirov 0
QS: 23-16, 39-21, 63-33, 85-50

LEBANON over CHINA, 89-69
The Lebanese were aware they needed to beat China by more than 17 points to steal Group A’s top spot from the Philippines, and they were merciless in blasting the younger Chinese, especially in the fourth quarter. Despite falling early, Coach Ghassan Sarkis’s boys never wavered, and they simply muscled their way to erect a 10-point bulge at the half. Lebanon was relentless and they never eased on the gas pedal. Jean Abdel Nour, Elie Stephan, and Fadi El-Khatib all hit at least three triples each to underscore Lebanon’s balanced attack. Garnett Thompson took care of the middle with 13 points, 8 rebounds, and 2 blocks. Zhao Tailong, Guo Ailun, and Wang Zhelin tried to rally the Chinese to no avail as as the trio shot a combined 11-of-33 from the floor. Even if China wins its last two games, they will probably finish third in Group A.

Wu Ke gets hacked down low as
the Chinese lose to the Lebanese.

Jean Abdel Nour goes up strong to the basket.

LIB 89 – Abdel Nour 25, El-Khatib F 25, Stephan 14, Thompson 13, Sarkis 6, El-Khatib C 3, Akl 3, Tabet 0, Rustom 0
CHN 69 – Zhao 12, Zhang 12, Duan 11, Wang ZL 10, Cao Y 10, Guo 6, Sui 4, Wu 2, Sun 2, Wang ZR 0, Cao F 0, Yu 0
QS: 15-22, 40-30, 60-51, 89-69

IRAN over QATAR, 85-75 (OT)
Qatar played excellently in the first half, but Iran came back strong to take the lead late in the fourth quarter. The Gulf state, however, managed to tie the game and force overtime, where Iran outscored them early and never looked back. This was by far the most exciting game of the tournament so far, and if Qatar had held on, this would’ve had severe repercussions throughout the remaining days of competition. Hamed Afagh and Samad Nikkhah Bahrami, though, found their marks just in time as Iran pulled the rug from under Coach Tom Wisman’s boys. Bahrami and Afagh combined for 45 points, while seldom-used big man Rouzbeh Arghavan pumped in 11 markers and 7 rebounds. Qatar was led by the trio of Mansour El Hadary, Daoud Daoud, and Erfan Ali Saeed with 21, 16, and 11 points respectively.

Rouzbeh Arghavan shows his range.

Erfan Ali Saeed and the Qataris almost
completed the biggest upset of the tourney.

IRI 85 – Bahrami 27, Afagh 18, Arghavan 11, Kardoust  9, Jamshidi 9, Aslani 7, Sahakian 4, Mashayekhi 0, Yakhchali 0, Foroutan 0
QAT 75 – El Hadary 21, Daoud 16, Saeed 11, Mohammed B 7, Ali 5, Salem 5, Zaidan 4, Mohamed 3, Musa 3, Mohammed M 0
QS: 12-23, 26-45, 47-51, 69-69, 85-75

 All images are by Milad Payami/
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