Sotto’s TD leads Ateneo past NU
(The Philippine Star) - February 24, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Seven-footer Kai Sotto came away with 11 blocks to highlight his triple-double feat as Ateneo bucked a shaky start to blast National University, 86-70, and zero in on the UAAP Season 80 juniors basketball crown at the Filoil Flying V Center in San Juan yesterday.

The Blue Eaglets struggled in the early going, falling by six, 11-17, after the first 10 minutes but stepped up their attack in the final half to win pulling away in the opener of their best-of-three series.

Extending their unbeaten run to 15 games, the Blue Eaglets gun for the clincher in Game 2 slated at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, also at the San Juan arena.    

Sotto spearheaded Ateneo’s charge with 22 points with the 7-1 future national player also dominating the boards with 16 rebounds while foiling a number of NU attempts at the basket.

“Actually, he (Sotto) was playing sub-par. Maybe because Kai is not in shape. I don’t know,” said Ateneo coach Joe Silva. “But we always have a personal relationship. He texted me: ‘Abangan ninyo na coach, ito na. I got you coach.’”

Aside from four dunks, set up by SJ Belangel’s assists, Sotto’s menacing presence in the middle proved enough to intimidate the Bullpups.

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