SKIPPER Sue Roces delivered huge as usual, while Lou Ann Latigay and Jaja Santiago also dished out solid performances as a PLDT side missing its biggest star and coach still proved too much for newcomer Team Baguio, 24-10, 25-16, 25-21, on Sunday in the Shakey's V-League Season 12 Open Conference at The Arena in San Juan.
Roces scored 16, while Latigay and Santiago added 11 each for the Ultra Fast Hitters, who needed only an hour and 10 minutes to finish the match despite playing without recent signing Alyssa Valdez and coach Roger Gorayeb.
[See Alyssa Valdez misses out on Shakey's V-League debut for PLDT? Find out why]
“Bagong team lang kasi sila, although selection sila from Baguio, compared sa team namin mahihirapan sila sa amin,” said PLDT Home Ultera assistant coach Clint Malazo.
“Kahit may bago 'yung core kasi ng team namin buo pa (Roces and Latigay), errors lang sa service at saka mga lapses sa defense sa likod ang nagka problema kanina," he added.
Elaine Kasilag from University of Perpetual Help Laguna chipped in with seven for PLDT, which joined opening-day winners Cagayan Valley and Philippine Navy.
[See Cagayan Valley gets off to fast start with straight-sets win over Fourbees Perpetual]
Malazo said although Santiago joined the team only recently, she has played with several key PLDT players particularly setter Rubie de Leon and never really had trouble blending in.
"Medyo matagal na rin, more than a month na kami nagpa-practice," said Malazo. "Si Jaja naman matagal na kasama ni Rubie nakasama na niya dati sa NU (National University) nag-guest player sa kanila kaya hindi na masyado ang adjustment."
Cindy Benitez and Krissian Tsuchiya each had four points for Team Baguio, which joins Philippine Coast Guard and Fourbees-Perpetual in the bottom half of the standings.