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Perlas ends SEAG with huge win, still in hunt for podium

Perlas Pilipinas. Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Though they are out of the running for a historic gold medal, Perlas Pilipinas still made sure to end their campaign in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games on a winning note.

Behind a nearly perfect performance from University of the East standout Cindy Resultay, the Philippine women’s basketball team overpowered Vietnam, 118-44, on Friday morning at the MABA Stadium in Kuala Lumpur.

It was a superb performance from the Filipinas, who had lost in heartbreaking fashion to Malaysia on Thursday to lose their grip on the gold.

They finished the tournament with a 4-2 win-loss record. As it stands, they remain in the hunt for bronze, though their fate is not in their hands.

Thailand will need to lose its final two assignments, against Indonesia and Malaysia, for Perlas Pilipinas to earn the bronze medal.

“Good exit, good game. I’m still proud of the girls for not letting up and finishing it with a bang. Sabi ko nga, let’s finish this with a bang, or close it with a bang,” said Coach Patrick Aquino.

“We did it. Happy lang ako na nanalo tayo,” he added.

It was a slow start for the Philippines, as they trailed 21-20 at the end of the opening frame.

But they ramped up their pressure defense in the second quarter, and wound up limiting Vietnam to only two points in the frame. Resultay and Raiza Dy were unstoppable in the second period, as they made life miserable for Vietnam’s ball-handlers and repeatedly scoring easy buckets in transition.

They piled up the points in the third period, with Janine Pontejos knocking down three three-pointers as the Philippines pulled away for good.

Resultay finished with 26 points, making eight of her nine attempts from the field as well as eight of her nine free throws. Dy, the former Far Eastern U star, added 23 points.

The Filipinas shot 52% from the field and limited Vietnam to only 33%. They also forced their opponents to commit 37 turnovers, with Resultay accounting for eight steals.

Aquino says the team will now regroup before moving forward with an eye towards the 2019 SEA Games, which will be held in the Philippines.

“Looking forward to Manila SEA Games. Probably that’s the end of the jinx for women’s basketball. Not here, but two years from now,” he said.

The Scores:

PERLAS PILIPINAS 118 – Resultay 26, Dy 23, Pontejos 15, Castro 12, Animam 8, Almazan 6, Bernardino 6, Cabinbin 6, Tongco 6, Abaca 4, Sambile 4, Lim 2.

VIETNAM 44 – Huynh 9, Trat 8, Nguyen TCT 7, Bui THT 4, Nguyen TLV 4, Nguyen TTD 4, Bui KN 2, Linh 2, Nguyen NB 2, Tran 2, Pham TDT 0, Pham TTB 0.

Quarters: 20-21, 52-23, 86-33, 118-44.

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.

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