Better showing from Gilas Women, but Japan takes win
Published on June 27, 2023

Gilas Pilipinas Women sustained a 95-57 loss to reigning champion Japan in their second game of the FIBA Women’s Asia Cup 2023 Tuesday in Sydney. 

Afril Bernardino tallied 12 points, eight rebounds, and three steals. Vanessa De Jesus continued to impress in her first Gilas run as she scored 12 points and dished out four assists.

Janine Pontejos chipped in with 11 points, punctuated by three triples, while Jack Animam filled the stat sheet with eight points, seven rebounds, two assists, two steals, and two blocks. 

Despite the loss, it was a much better showing for the national team after a humbling 105-34 loss against Australia on Monday. 

“I’m happy, we came out good this time, not as bad as yesterday,” said head coach Pat Aquino. “It’s just a tough team to beat. They’re aiming for their sixth straight FIBA Asia championship. I think Japan is a great team – we just happened to be on the wrong side. We’re happy. I’m happy with the game and hopefully, we continue to get stronger each day.”

Himawari Akaho tallied 16 points for Japan which has held the FIBA Asia Cup crown since 2013. 

Gilas now holds a 0-2 record in Group B and will face Chinese-Taipei tomorrow.