Even if their import finished the game scoreless, the Barako Bull went on to win 103-90 over the Alaska Aces to take game 1 of their best of three quarterfinals match.
With their import still adjusting, the veterans of the Barako Bull took charge, especially new acquisition Ronald Tubid which led the team with 24 points.
"He is not yet acclimatized to the system of play in the PBA," said Baculi of their Nigerian import.
"Making it harder for him is that these are the playoffs and playoffs in the PBA are tough. If you're not cut out for these you will not survive," added Baculi, baring they are still trying to bring back Rodney White, who averaged a conference leading 29.8 points, 13.2 rebounds, 5.8 assists in the five games he played here before being forced to attend to his ailing father back home.
Alaska played well on the first quarter which had them leading 27-17 but in the second quarter the Barako Bull veterans stepped to eventually grab a 1 point lead 48-47 leading the the halftime.
Danny Seigle who has been sidelined to injuries this conference, came off the bench to score 21 points and became the 34th and latest member of the 2,000 defensive rebounds club with six boards.
Alaska was led by Cyrus Baguio with 20 points and LA Tenorio with 19 points. But clearly needed the help of their import which only managed to score 11 points.
Barako Bull will go for the series win this Wednesday.