By Jonas Terrado
Game Today (Changhua, Taiwan)
1 p.m. — Philippines vs Jordan
Mighty Sports-Philippines put its title bid in motion after pummeling Iran, 98-72, in the start of the 41st William Jones Cup at the Changhua County Gym in Changhua, Taiwan.
Eugene Phelps scored 25 points and six rebounds while Fil-Americans Jeremiah Gray and Mackenzie Moore added 16 and 15 points as Mighty Sports, backed by Go For Gold and Healthcube, dominated an Iranian side which was composed of youngsters instead of its main roster.
Fil-Am Mikey Williams and former PBA and Alab Pilipinas import Renaldo Balkman added 10 points apiece for Mighty, which is serious in its intent to win the Jones Cup for the first time after sweeping the 2016 edition.
Coach Charles Tiu and lead assistant Rajko Toroman look to build on their massive victory on Saturday when Mighty plays Jordan at 1 p.m.
Jordan was playing a South Korean side powered by ex-PBA import Ricardo Ratcliffe at presstime.
Vahid Dalirzahan scored 14 points and Amirhossein Azari added 12 for the Iranians in the loss.
Gray and McKenzie combined for eight points in the final two minutes as Mighty outscored Iran, 12-1, to take a 46-33 halftime lead.
Mighty padded its lead to 78-51 at the end of third with Phelps, Gray and Williams leading the charge.
MIGHTY SPORTS 98 — Phelps 25, Gray 16, Moore 15, Williams 10, Balkman 10, Ndiaye 9, Black 6, Adams 5, Brickman 2, Graham 0, Banal 0.
IRAN 72 — Dalirzahan 14, Azari 12, Vand 12, Vahedi 8, Torabi 7, Monji 7, Dro 4, Bahramzad 1, Taheri 0, Aghajanpour 0, Taheri 0.
Quarters: 21-12; 46-33; 78-51; 98-72.