Paul Desiderio earns Macaraya praise in seamless transition from UP to Cafe France
Paul Desiderio scored seven of his 16 points in the fourth quarter to help Cafe France hold off Tanduay late. Dante Peralta

PAUL Desiderio said he is still adjusting to his new team but made a huge first impression in Cafe France's 83-67 win over Tanduay in the PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup on Thursday. 

The University of the Philippines standout finished with 16 points, including seven crucial points in the fourth period to help the Bakers douse the Rhum Masters late rally that cut a 26-point deficit down to six. 

"Gigil pa," Desiderio admitted moments after the contest touted as the battle between two title favorites.  

"Medyo naninibago ano kasi, yun nga, nasa labas ako ng UP. Yung sa'min more on pick-and-roll, set plays sa UP. Dito sa CafeFrance, dribble-drive. Yung decision making mo, dito ka mag-aadjust kung paano yung laro mo," he added.

Desiderio teamed up with fellow newbie Michael Calisaan, who led the team with 23 points.

[See Cafe France nearly squanders huge lead but holds on to beat Tanduay]  

Café France coach Egay Macaraya lauded the efforts of his new recruits, but insisted the victory was a result of the team’s collective effort.

"I guess tama yung pag pick up namin kasi Paul and Michael are very good. I guess we're on the right track," said Macaraya. 

"Di lang sila ang nag-step up. I hope everybody starts jelling. Sa tingin ko this will be a good season pag ganun maglaro mga bata," he added. 

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