Triple-doubling Kai Sotto reclaims top spot in NBTC 24

ABS-CBN Sports on Feb 27, 2018 07:33 PM
Triple-doubling Kai Sotto reclaims top spot in NBTC 24
Kai Sotto used a triple-double to jump back onto the very top of the NBTC 24

After two weeks, Ateneo de Manila High School standout and 23 for 2023 Gilas cadet Kai Sotto has regained the honor as the top high school prospect in Week 7 of the National Basketball Training Center Chooks-to-Go 24.

The NBTC Chooks-to-Go 24 is a weekly ranking of high school players taking part in the UAAP, CESAFI-NBTC, MMBL, and FCAAF tournaments as well as the recently concluded NCAA competition.

Sotto, who is undoubtedly the top young center in the country, lifted the Blue Eaglets to an 86-70 win over Nazareth School of National University last Friday with a stout statline of 22 points on 9-of-12 shooting, 16 rebounds, and 11 blocks.

That was the first triple-double performance in the UAAP Juniors Basketball division since 2003.

“I text him, he texts me and he texted me, ‘Coach, abangan niyo. Eto na, makikita niyo yung totoong Kai Sotto.’ True enough, he proved to be a man of his word," shared Ateneo head coach Joe Silva about the top Grade 9 cager in the country today.

Blue Eaglets’ floor general SJ Belangel, who had 17 points, seven rebounds, eight assists, and five steals, remained as the top point guard but fell to number two overall.

Rounding-up the top five are Joel Cagulangan of La Salle Greenhills, NCAA MVP and 23 for 2023 cadet Will Gozum of Mapua University, and UAAP MVP CJ Cansino of University of Sto. Tomas.

After posting better numbers in Game 1, Dave Ildefonso of Ateneo rose to seven, overtaking NU's Rhayann Amsali.

Making the biggest leap in the penultimate week of the rankings was NU's Terrence Fortea. Fortea, a member of the Batang Gilas squad that won gold in the 2017 SEABA Championship, rose from 19 to 14 after pacing the Bullpups in Game One with 21 markers.

Here is the complete rankings after Week 7:

1. Kai Sotto, ADMU (2)
2. SJ Belangel, ADMU (1)
3. Joel Cagulangan, LSGH (3)
4. Will Gozum, MU (4)
5. CJ Cansino, UST (5)
6. L-Jay Gonzales, FEU (6)
7. Dave Ildefonso, ADMU (8)
8. Rhayann Amsali, NU (7)
9. Aaron Fermin, AU (9)
10. Clint Escamis, MU (10)
11. John Galinato, CKSC (11)
12. Inand Fornilos, LSGH (12)
13. Warren Bonifacio, MU (13)
14. Terrence Fortea, NU (19)
15. RJ Abarrientos, FEU (14)
16. Evan Nelle, SBC (15)
17. Joem Sabandal, ADU (16)
18. Beirn Laurente, UV (17)
19. Raven Cortez, DLSZ (20)
20. Miguel Oczon, NU (24)
21. Alex Visser, SHS-Cebu (18)
22. Mac Guadana, LPU (21)
23. Harvey Pagsanjan, HCHS (23)
24. Joshua Yerro, UV (22)

The Juniors stars were ranked using the following criteria: league stats, impact in team, team record, leadership, defense, offense, and level of competition.

These rankings will be used to determine the 24 players who will take part in the annual SM-NBTC High School All-Star Game on March at the MOA Arena.

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