Dominant first quarter propels Italy over Philippines in basketball World Cup

Xinhua 2019-09-02

FOSHAN, China, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- Italy took on first quarter dominance to seal their 108-62 victory over the Philippines in Group D of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 here on Saturday.
photo by Foshan News
All 12 players scored for Italy. Amedeo Della Valle and Luigi Datome had 17 points apiece. Danilo Gallinari made four three-pointers to add 16.
Italy made 6 of 8 three-pointers in the opening period, while the Philippines missed all seven attempts beyond the arc, trailing by 29 points as the quarter time ran out.
Italy showed no sign of slowing down in offense, leading by 38 points into the halftime.
The process of the match saw little change in the second half, as Italy extended their margin to over 50 points in the last quarter.
"It's good to start the competition in the right way. We did a great job. Our percentage from the outside is good, because they are all open shots from good ball movement," Gallinari, playing for NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder, noted.
Andray Blatche, playing in several Chinese clubs in career, shared a team-high 15 points with Jaymar Perez for the Philippines.
"It' s not the way we want to play. We feel pretty disappointed about it. We need to move on, forget about the loss and focus on our next game," said the Philippines point guard Kiefer Ravena.
"Italy is a good team," admitted Yeng Guiao, the Philippines' head coach. "They have the size in guard position that we don't have. It's important in international games to have that size and quickness, and combine them."
Guiao added, "We feel disappointed, but it's a learning experience."
Earlier on Saturday, the tournament's title favorites Serbia tamed Angola 105-59 through 13 three-pointers and 32 assists.
Serbia will take on the Philippines, while Italy face Angola in the second round.
For Guiao, Serbia's three-pointer shooting "can be a big worry."
"They can shoot from anywhere. We faced the same problem against Italy, but it may be worse facing Serbia. We have to gather ourselves again and be able to recover," Guiao pointed out.
Italy's head coach Meo Sachetti played down the importance of final round clash against Serbia which could decide the group winner, rather focus on Monday's match-up against Angola.
"Serbia is tough, tough and tough, maybe the best one or two at the World Cup. But now we have to talk about the match against Angola, that is the most important for me," Sachetti said.