UAAP jrs: Sotto gets triple double as Ateneo overpowers NU in Game 1
Kai Sotto displayed his strength and led Ateneo to an 86-70 drubbing of National University to take a 1-0 series lead in the UAAP Season 80 juniors’ basketball tournament Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre.
The 7-foot-2 Sotto had a preposterous triple-double of 22 points, 16 rebounds, and 11 blocks as the Blue Eaglets are now one win away from a record 19th title.
After trailing 30-17 early in the second quarter, the Blue Eaglets went into kill mode with a 33-5 run to take a 50-35 lead in the third period and never looked back.
Ateneo head coach Joe Silva admitted his team’s inexperience were in full exposure in the first quarter as they trailed 17-11 heading into the second period, but they were able to weather the storm just in time for the game-changing run.
“The experience is on NU’s side especially when we played shaky in the first quarter,” said Silva, who led the Eaglets to the Season 78 title, in Filipino.
“So I called a timeout and I told them ‘now you see what it’s like in the Finals, let’s just do our best.’”
Sean Ildefonso finished with 21 points with seven rebounds to boot for Ateneo while SJ Belangel filled the stat sheets with 17 points, seven boards, eight assists, and five steals.
Terrence Fortea led the Bullpups with 21 points while Rhayyan Amsali had an 11-point, 11-rebound double-double.
Ateneo 86 – Sotto 22, Ildefonso 21, Belangel 17, Credo 13, David 8, Escalona 3, Manuel 2, Angeles 0, Chiu 0, Jaymalin 0, Lopa 0.
NU 70 – Fortea 21, Oczon 13, Amsali 11, Gonzales 8, Minerva 8, Malonzo 4, Manalang 2, Felicida 2, Coyoca 1, Javillonar 0, Pangilinan 0.
Quarterscores: 11-17, 31-31, 61-51, 86-70
For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.