Kai Sotto puts up stellar numbers despite loss in Australian NBL

Kai Sotto topped his last performance with a double-digit outing against Illawarra. (Kai Sotto Instagram)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

Filipino hoop sensation Kai Sotto finally made his impact for the Adelaide 36ers in the Australian National Basketball League (NBL) despite the 100-89 loss against the Illawarra Hawks.

The seven-foot-two young Gilas cadet bounced back from an average performance during his first game and dropped 12 points and five rebounds in just 13 minutes and 44 seconds of playing time.

Sotto was terrific from the free-throw line and sank all of his eight attempts while imposing his dominance in the shaded lane every time he had the chance for a post-up.

During his first game, Sotto only tallied six points, eight rebounds, and one steal while absorbing a painful loss from the defending champions Melbourne United, 97-78.

Sotto is currently slowly recovering from the sore knee injury that kept him out of the Adelaide tune-up games during the past months.

However, the Adelaide strengthening and conditioning coaches already gave the green light for Sotto to return but to only play in limited minutes.

Sunday Dech led Adelaide with 20 points, three rebounds, and two assists while Todd Withers chipped in 15 points and four rebounds.

Sotto will seek to deliver a win and snap Adelaide’s losing streak in their next game against the Tasmania JackJumpers on January 28, Friday.