MANILA -- The Philippines salvaged some measure of pride after it finished ninth in the tough 20-nation three-on-three basketball tournament Monday in the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore.
The Filipino squad trounced Puerto Rico, 34-23, to list their fourth consecutive win since their eliminations encounter with South Africa last week.
Bobby Ray Parks Jr., son of former seven-time PBA Best Import Bobby Sr., played the hero’s role for the Nationals by draining 13 points seven rebounds, a block, a steal and no error before fouling out.
Earlier, Parks made a 10-point output including a pair of booming triples as he helped power the Filipinos against the Asian powerhouse Iran, 28-19.
Michael Pate, a standout from La Salle-Greenhills, contributed eight points in a reserve role, while Jeron Teng, son of former pro Alvin, and Cris Michael Tolomia, younger brother of ex-pro player Chester, chipped in seven and six markers, respectively.
The Philippines had a discouraging but gallant battle as netter Jeson Patrombon, taekwondo jin Kirk Barbosa, weightlifter Patricia Llena all fell by the wayside.
The RP basketball team also gave their best but failed to join the quarterfinals after winning only one of four elimination duels.
RP chief of mission Mark Joseph said the feat of the young Filipino dribblers should make everybody proud back home.
“Sometimes making an impact is enough. We came here operating on logic that we could affect the opponents put before us and simply put, we took our chance,” he said.
“Folks back home need a cause, some reason to hit out of our usual apathetic drift. Our youth Olympic athletes carry an irresistible energy with them demanding that we Filipinos look at them. In reality, our team came in anonymity but made an impact and left a memory. Sometimes, just that is enough,” he added. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)