WITH the Philippines up by 50 points late in the third quarter, Andray Blatche shouted instructions to his teammates on the defensive end of the floor as if it was his team was on the wrong end of a blowout.
Despite the urgency in Blatche's voice, Gilas Pilipinas managed to sustain its killer instinct throughout this time as it clobbered Malaysia, 106-51, on Sunday night to remain unbeaten in the Southeast Asian Basketball Association (Seaba) Championship.
Malaysia scored the game’s first basket, but that only pumped the Philippines up as it retaliated with 13 unanswered points on the way to their third straight victory in front of a sizeable crowd at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum on Mothers’ Day.
“Hopefully we were able to play in a way that would make our moms proud,” Gilas coach Chot Reyes said.
Blatche and Troy Rosario registered 13 points apiece to lead six players who scored in double-digits for the Filipino dribblers, whose averaging winning margin rose to 69.6 points after three games.
The Philippines takes a rest on Monday before returning to the court the next day against Thailand.
Matthew Wright and Terrence Romeo added 12 points each, while Roger Pogoy and Jayson Castro chipped in 10 points apiece for the Filipino dribblers.
Calvin Abueva, after leading the team in scoring in the first two games, finished with nine points , the last on a three-pointer that gave Gilas its biggest lead at 57 points, 103-46, late in the game.
Yee Heng scored 12 points in 22 minutes off the bench to lead the Malaysians, whose team is composed mostly of players who suited up for BluStar in the PBA D-League.
“That's where they learned to be tough, to be physical,” Reyes said. “That's why we were prepared for that. We told them these guys will get up in your grill and pressure you. We were looking for a lot of layups and backdoor cuts to counter their pressure.
PHILIPPINES 106 – Rosario 13, Blatche 13, Wright 12, Romeo 12, Pogoy 10, William 10, Abueva 9, Malicsi 7, Aguilar 7, Almazan 6, Fajardo 5, Jalalon 2
MALAYSIA 51 – Heng 12, Ting 10, Liaw 8, Chin 6, Ang 5, Teo 5, Mak 2, Chan 1, Choong 1, Choo 1, Ong 0, Liew 0
Quarterscores: 36-17, 61-26, 88-35, 106-51