PVL: Pia Ildefonso turns pro, gets ‘fresh start’ with Foxies
MANILA, Philippines—Pia Ildefonso has decided to turn pro and join the Farm Fresh Foxies ahead of the 2023 Premier Volleyball League Invitational Conference on June 27 at FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan.
Farm Fresh, the newest PVL club, on Saturday welcomed the former Ateneo Blue Eagle.
After sitting out in the UAAP Season 85 but didn’t divulge the reason, which seemed a personal matter, the 5-foot-9 middle blocker opted to have a fresh start in her volleyball career.
“I just wanted a fresh start and what better way to have that than join a team na nasa pangalan na ang fresh,” said Ildefonso in a statement.
The daughter of basketball legend Danny Ildefonso is joining her brothers Dave and Shaun in the pro ranks.
The youngest Ildefonso is eager to learn from the best as she will be handled by two-time NCAA champion coach Jerry Yee of College of Saint Benilde.
She is also looking forward to teaming up with the core of Lady Blazers bannered by Gayle Pascual, Season 98 Finals MVP Jade Gentapa, Cloanne Mondoñedo, Michelle Gamit, Zam Nolasco, and Jessa Dorog.
“Right now, I’m just someone who wants to learn more about the sport from one of the best coaches in the country. I want to fall back in love with the sport and through the help of my lovely teammates who are very talented,” she said. “I hope to get there with hard work and passion. Sobrang daming kailangan matutunan lalo na from the veterans in the team and that excites me.”
Ildefonso, who studied high school at Nazareth School, played her rookie year with the Blue Eagles in UAAP Season 84 last June but coach Oliver Almadro seldomly fielded her during their bronze finish.
The 20-year-old also played a key role in the preseason stints of Ateneo in the Shakey’s Super League and V-League last year and also saw action in Season 85 women’s beach volleyball tournament, placing seventh with one win.
Farm Fresh is grouped in Pool B with Petro Gazz, F2 Logistics, Choco Mucho, Cignal, and fellow new team Foton.
Pool A features defending champion Creamline, Chery Tiggo, PLDT, Akari, and Gerflor with the top two teams in each pool advancing to the round-robin semifinals, where two foreign squads will join.