2014 FIBA Asia U18 Championships: Final Day

The Philippines stormed back to pull the rug from under Japan in the battle for fifth place even as China, Iran, and Korea finished 1-2-3 on the last day of the 2014 FIBA Asia U18 Championships. China, Iran, and Korea, consequently, qualify for the 2015 FIBA U19 World Championships, which will be held in Crete, Greece.

China, Korea, and Iran all make it to the 2015 FIBA U18 World Championships
in Crete, Greece.


Final Day:     

The Malaysians ended their stirring run through the U18 tournament with a landmark win over Kazakhstan. Despite trailing for most of the contest, the SEABA side managed to rally in the final quarter and turn the table son the Kazakhs. Wing Jet Tan shot 6/10 from the floor to finish with a team-high 16 points for Malaysia, and he was backstopped by Yee Tong Heng and John Wong, who scored 15 and 14 respectively. The winners used stifling defense to steal this game, forcing 25 Kazakh turnovers. Coach Zlexey Yeropkin’s side, meanwhile, was paced by the 15 markers of Andrey Litvinenko.

PHILIPPINES over JAPAN, 113-105 (OT)
The Japanese held sway for most of regulation, but the biggest shots came from the Philippines. Radge Tongco, who has proven to be the Pinoys’ #1 scoring threat in this tourney, drilled the game-tying three-pointer that sent the contest into overtime, where 6’6 Kobe Paras took his turn to dominate and lead Batang Gilas to fifth place. Tongco actually had a bad shooting night, making just 6 of his 13 FGs, but he made a huge one when he drained a three late in regulation after Japan’s Akito Uchida missed a couple of potentially victory-sealing free throws. In the extra session, Jollo Go, Leonard Santillan, Dave Yu, and Paras all took turns making baskets as the Filipinos completed the scintillating come-from-behind win. The Philippines dominated in the paint, outrebounding Japan, 68-45, and outscoring them, 48-20. Both Paras and Mark Dyke recorded sublime double-doubles for the Philippines, the former getting 27 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 blocks, while the latter scoring 18 points and grabbing 12 boards. Go also impressed, hitting 5 triples on his way to 24 markers. As for Team Hayabusa, Shota Tsuyama conspired with Uchida to score a combined 70 points. Big man Taiga Watanabe had 9 rebounds, 8 assists, and 2 blocks, but he scored just 3 points on 1/5 FG shotoing.

KOREA over TAIWAN, 70-58
Korea started the third quarter strong to overhaul a slim halftime deficit and eventually cruised to their sixth win in eight games. Coach Kim Seung-Hwan’s kids had some trouble containing Taiwan’s speed and shooting in the first half, but they regrouped well and stamped their class in the last two periods. Kim Kyung-Won was the best player here, scoring 26 points on top of 17 rebounds and 4 blocks as Korea booked a ticket to Greece next year. Jeon Hyun-Woo and Byeon Jun-Hyeong scored 14 and 11 markers in support. Taiwan, meanwhile, was led by the combined 23 points of Tseng Po-Yu and Sun Yung-Cheng. Uncharacteristically, the Taiwanese shot poorly from long range, making just 6 of their 24 three-point attempts.

CHINA over IRAN, 66-58
What was expected to be a close game turned into a rout early on as the Chinese put on a clinic in tight defense and efficient offense.  China forced Iran to shoot a paltry 28% from the floor here while also outrebounding the Iranians, 44-34. Four Chinese scored in double-digits here, led by the 16 points of wunderkind Zhou Qi, while Zou Yuchen, Zhao Rui, and Zhuo Zhennian dropped 15, 13, and 12 respectively. Sun Minghui orchestrated the offense well for coach Fan Bin’s team, recording 8 assists. Iranian big man Mohammad Yousofvand was severely limited here, scoring just 7 points on 3/11 FG shooting. The only Iranian in double-figures was Navid Rezaeifar, who scored 13 points, but shot just 5/17 from the floor. Both China and Iran advance to the U18 World Championships. This is the third straight U18 crown for China and its eleventh overall.

Images are from FIBA Asia.

Next Post »
0 Comment