The Philippines settled for silver in men’s 3×3 wheelchair basketball on Saturday, the country’s first medal at the 12th ASEAN Para Games here.
The Filipino Warriors, represented by Alfie Cabañog, Kenneth Christopher Tapia, Cleford Tropacio, Rene Macabenquil, and John Rey Escalante, fought hard but surrendered to the Thais, 7-15, at Morodok Techo National Stadium’s Elephant Hall 2.
The bronze medal went to Malaysia, which pulled off a 17-8 victory over Cambodia.
The Philippines opened its campaign with a loss to Thailand (6-18), but scored victories over Indonesia (11-5), Cambodia (14-5), and Malaysia (8-7) to arrange a title showdown with its eventual conqueror.
“We started slow. We just started hitting the mark at the half, unfortunately it was too late. The 3×3 is a fast-paced game so whoever blinks would be in deep trouble and unfortunately, it was us. In the later part, we played according to our game plan and executed well but it was too late,” coach Vernon Perea said after the game.
The men’s squad duplicated its 2022 performance, just as the women’s team placed fourth anew just like last year.
The Lady Warriors absorbed a 5-8 setback from Laos in the battle for third place.
Cambodia retained the title after beating Thailand, 11-9.
“The girls played their hearts out. I hope we carry the good vibes into the 5-on-5 matches,” said the 52-year-old Perea, a former member of the Ato Badolato-mentored San Beda College Red Cubs. (PNA)