PBA Draft top selections Moala Tautuaa and Troy Rosario showed a lot of promise with huge, livewire performance carrying Talk n Text to a 99-91 win over Chinese Taipei in the second day of the Master Game Face MVP Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum Saturday night.
Tautuaa, the No. 1 pick, powered his way to 20 points and 13 rebounds while the Rosario, the second choice, collected 19 markers and nine boards as the Tropang Texters made a good account of themselves in humbling the Taiwanese side that is considered among the medal contenders in the coming FIBA Asia tourney.
Danny Seigle and Denok Miranda also provided a big push as Talk n Text rebounded from a loss to Gilas Pilipinas in the opening day of the pocket event serving as final warm-up tourney of Team Phl and Chinese Taipei for the Asian Olympic qualifier slated in Changsha, China.
Less than two weeks before the Asian meet, the Taiwanese are down to a nine-man team with big men Tseng Wen-ting and Wu Tai-hao, and gunner Lin Chi Chieh nursing slight injuries.
But nothing should be taken away from the tough effort of the Texters, fresh from a stint in an invitational tourney in Seoul, Korea.
Tautuaa and Rosario, meanwhile, are definitely toughened up by their training with the Gilas Pilipinas pool.
The two in-coming PBA freshmen dominated the paint, nearly outrebounding the entire Chinese Taipei team, 22-28.
Tautuaa, Rosario and their teammates poured it all at the finish, overcoming an eight-point deficit at the start of the last quarter to hand Chinese Taipei a second loss in as many games in the MVP Cup.
The Texters were still down by two at 80-82 before unloading a 9-2 bomb highlighted a two-handed jam by Rosario of Chinese Taipei naturalized player Quincy Davis.
With TNT still holding a precarious lead at 92-87, Tautuaa took a big steal leading to a Rosario breakaway layup that all but settled the outcome of the game.
Larry Fonacier made it a double-digit lead at 97-87 on a three-point bomb with 29 ticks to go.
Talk n Text is priming up in a bid to improve on its fourth-place finish in the last PBA all-Filipino tourney (SB)