Kai Sotto had his second pro start on Friday. However, it ended up like his first one — an Adelaide loss.
The 36ers collapsed in the final frame, falling to the Tasmania JackJumpers, 72-80, in the 2021-22 National Basketball League season at Adelaide Entertainment Centre.
Leading by as many as 10 early in the game and 66-60 two minutes into the final quarter, Adelaide went cold for six minutes that allowed Tasmania to go on a 16-0 spurt.
Sunday Dech’s free throws with 2:06 left stopped the bleeding for Adelaide.
However, steady free throws shooting by the JackJumpers averted any collapse as they kept their playoff hopes alive.
Tasmania, who went up to 13-10 — 1.5 games behind Perth for fourth, was led by Josh Adams. Adams tallied 31 points on 11-of-17 shooting from the field and five rebounds.
Jack Mcveigh added 14 points while Josh Magette got eight points and seven assists.
Sotto played 17 minutes in the game, finishing with just six points on 3-of-4 shooting with four rebounds.
Daniel Johnson led the way for the 36ers with 16 points while Dech added 15. The two combined to shoot just 11-of-26 from the field.
Adelaide suffered its fifth loss in the last seven games to fall to 7-14 in the standings.
Adelaide will next face Brisbane on Sunday at Nissan Arena.