By Jelly F. Musico
MANILA, 31Aug2014 (PNA) – Gilas Pilipinas returned in world basketball arena for the first time in four decades and made its presence felt after sending a game into overtime before bowing out to might Croatia, 78-81, in the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Seville, Spain on Saturday night (Manila Time).
The Philippines had a chance to win the game in the regulation period but Jeff Chan missed a three-point shot at the buzzer.
Jason Castro also missed a three-point basket at the buzzer that could have forced another extra five minutes in the game covered live by TV5.
The Philippines erased a nine-point deficit, 56-65, with a blistering 13-2 run anchored by naturalized Andrei Blatche and Chan to grab the lead 69-67, with 2:20 minutes left in the regulation period to the delight of the cheering Filipino crowd.
After a tie, the Croatians responded with back-to-back basket to regain the upperhand, 71-69, while Jason Castro forced an overtime with a floater at 71-all.
The Philippines will face next third seed Greece in Group B game set at 8p.m. (2a.m. on Monday Manila Time). (PNA)