KAI Sotto was a picture of a happy kid after achieving his dream of playing for Ateneo in the Blue Eaglets' debut in the Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup.
Wearing jersey No. 30 like his father Ervin, Sotto played in the third quarter for six minutes, scoring four points, all inside the paint, to go with an assist in the Blue Eaglets’ 86-81 loss to San Beda in the opener.
“Masaya kasi mababait mga teammates ko at saka Atenistang Atenista na ako,” said the 6-foot-9 Sotto.
Amid the hype surrounding the 13-year-old, Sotto said he felt goose bumps playing in front of a crowd at the San Juan Arena. He also didn’t expect to be fielded in by juniors head coach Joe Silva against the NCAA champions.
“Nung una kinakabahan ako kasi malaki ‘yung crowd. Pero nag-adjust muna ako. Sabi ni coach sa akin nuong una, baka hindi muna ako palaruin pero maya maya, nung third quarter na, sabi niya, ‘Kai, ready ka na.’ Nagulat ako,” said Sotto.
Sotto said his focus was not on scoring points, saying all he ever wanted was play quality minutes in his brief appearance on the floor.
“Nung pumasok ako, sinabi ko sa sarili ko na kailangan kong rumebound at dumepensa,” said Sotto.