Despite progress, Mo Tautuaa, Troy Rosario insist they're nowhere near where they wanna be
Rookie Troy Rosario gets some instructions from Gilas coach and Talk 'N Text consultant Tab Baldwin. Dante Peralta

MO Tautuaa and Troy Rosario may have atoned for disappointing debuts with Talk ‘N Text, but insist they are nowhere near where they envision themselves to be.

After combining for just six points against Alaska, Tautuaa and Rosario cracked the double-digit mark, tallying 12 points each in the Tropang Texters’ 101-97 win over Mahindra on Saturday in the PBA Philippine Cup.

“I just had more preparation,” Tautuaa said. “We watched a lot of film and (coaches) told me the things I didn't do right. I tried fixing those things this game.”

“I’m still not where I want to be,” the No. 1 overall pick said. “But it's a step in the right direction.”

While his offense improved, Rosario stressed his defense remained a work in progress.

“Sa points oo (nag-improve), pero sa defense ko parang nakulangan,” the second pick said. “Mukhang hindi naging maganda 'yung depensa.”

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But both highly touted freshmen are not rushing anything.

“I can't get to the top if I won't take every step of the stairs,” Tautuaa, who hauled down six boards in 24 minutes, said. "Slowly, little by little, we'll figure things out.”

Rosario, who grabbed five rebounds and blocked one shot in 30 minutes, said he has to sustain his aggression.

“Aggressive lang talaga ako every day.”

They have to, in the absence of injured star forward Ranidel de Ocampo.

“Challenge sa amin 'yun pero hindi lang naman kami ang kailangan mag-step up,” Rosario said. “Kailangan the whole team yung kailangan mag-step up kasi hindi basta-basta yung nawala na minutes ni kuya.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos