Dwight Ramos continued his steady presence on both ends for Gilas Pilipinas as the nationals pulled away late in the fourth quarter to escape Iran, 63-48, in the 2023 Heyuan WUS International Basketball Tournament in China on Monday night, August 7.
The Filipinos closed out the pocket tournament riding on a two-game winning streak for a 3-1 record as they will head back to the Philippines to continue their preparation for the 2023 FIBA World Cup later this month.
Gilas was able to establish a double-digit lead in the first half, 22-9, before the Iranians rallied to cut its deficit to just a point at the halftime mark, 31-30.
The wards of head coach Chot Reyes, though, went cold in the third period, converting only two field goals in the frame, but their defense-oriented system made up for a misfiring offense as they held a 44-43 cushion heading to the fourth.
Thanks to timely baskets from RR Pogoy, Kiefer Ravena and Ray Parks, the Philippines was able to create a nine-point separation, 56-47, with 2:39 left.
Five straight points from Ramos then sealed it for Gilas as they won three of their four games in the China camp.
Gilas is tipped to face Mexico and Montenegro in a pair of friendly matches before plunging into the World Cup action starting on August 25. (GMA Integrated News)