Kai Sotto’s efficient outing goes down the drain as the Adelaide 36ers fail to start a new winning streak in the NBL
MANILA, Philippines – Kai Sotto’s efficient outing for the Adelaide 36ers went down the drain as they fell to the top-ranked Melbourne United, 101-74, in the Australia National Basketball League (NBL) on Sunday, March 20.
Sotto, who scored just 2 points in the 36ers’ 26-point win over the Cairns Taipans on Friday, March 18, came up with a much better showing on the offensive end, finishing with 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting, to go along with 4 rebounds and 1 assist in 19 minutes of play.
With the loss, Adelaide, which failed to start a new winning streak, remained at the eighth spot in the standings with a 6-13 slate.
Coming off a confidence-boosting blowout win just two days ago, the 36ers waxed hot early from the field and led the United by 2, 20-18, at the end of the opening frame.
Sotto quickly made his presence felt in the first period, tallying 3 points, 3 rebounds, and 1 assist in 5 minutes off the bench.
Adelaide, however, failed to keep its run going the rest of the way as Melbourne turned things around in the second quarter, outscoring the 36ers, 28-21, for a 46-41 lead at halftime.
In the second half, Adelaide just simply had no answers to Melbourne’s red-hot offense as the United’s lead even ballooned to as many as 30 points, 99-69, with only a minute left on the clock.
Six players scored in double figures for Melbourne, with Jo Lual-Acuil and Brad Newley leading the charge with 15 points apiece.
For Adelaide, Daniel Johnson topscored with 18 points, while Tad Dufelmeier added 11 markers.
The 36ers will get a week of rest before they return to the hardwood on Sunday, March 27, against the fifth-seeded Southeast Melbourne Phoenix at 10 am, Manila time.
Melbourne 101 – Lual-Acuil 15, Newley 15, White 12, Hukporti 11, Goulding 10, Ili 10, Prewster 8, Peatling 8, Dellavedova 6, Triplett 6, Okwera 0.
Adelaide 74 – Johnson 18, Sotto 12, Dufelmeier 11, McCarron 8, King 7, Bairstow 6, Hannahs 4, Malou 3, Marchall 3, Harris 2, Dech 0, Withers 0.
Quarters: 18-20, 46-41, 69-56, 101-74.