By JONAS TERRADO
Gilas Pilipinas encountered little trouble this time and crushed Cambodia, 100-32, Tuesday to stay unbeaten after two games in the men’s basketball competitions of the 31st Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam.
LeBron Lopez, the youngest member of the team at 18, displayed his athleticism inside the Thanh Tri Gymnasium on his way to 17 points as Gilas cruised to victory a day after a scary 76-73 win against Thailand.
Lopez gave the audience a treat with several dunks to highlight the lopsided affair which saw Gilas limiting Cambodia to 9 points or less each quarter.
Coach Chot Reyes gave plenty of minutes not only to Lopez, but also Will Navarro, Jaydee Tungcab and Isaac Go.
Navarro had 16 points, Tungcab made 14 while Go added 13 points while grabbing 12 rebounds.
Matthew Wright was the lone starter in double figures with 10 for the Philippines.
The national cagers gained the early lead as of posting time with Singapore on tap Wednesday at 4 p.m. local time (5 p.m. Manila time).
Singapore opened its campaign Wednesday against host Vietnam.
Chhorath Tep’s three gave Cambodia an early 6-5 lead, but Gilas would score 10 in a row led by Wright to take command for good.
Michael Henry Seng’s three-pointer stopped the bleeding for Cambodia, but the Philippines ended the period with 17 consecutive points for a 32-9 lead.