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Gilas Youth nears fifth

Gilas Youth survived a late rally by Chinese Taipei to eke out a 72-67 victory in the classification phase of the FIBA U18 Asian Championship Friday at the Azadi Basketball Hall in Tehran.

Filipino-Australian slotman Mason Amos was impressive as he towed the Filipinos to a win away from finishing fifth in this tourney that stakes a ticket to the FIBA U19 World Championship next year.

Amos fired 21 points, six rebounds and three assists while Earl Jared Abadam and Jared Bahay combined for 28 markers for the Filipinos, who warded off the Taiwanese’s sizzling rally in the crucial stretch to seal the victory.

It was the Philippines’ second win over the Taiwanese following their 84-73 victory in the preliminaries last Tuesday.

With the Philippines holding onto a 72-57 lead in the final 2:01, Chinese Taipei went on a furious 10-0 run to inch closer, 67-72.

But the Filipinos tightened their defensive screws to keep the Taiwanese at bay and move to the battle for fifth against the winner in the classification game between Qatar and Iran.

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