Dave Ildefonso surprised, but fully supportive of Pia's decision to turn pro | Inquirer Sports

Dave Ildefonso surprised, but fully supportive of Pia’s decision to turn pro

/ 12:08 AM June 15, 2023

Farm Fresh PVL Pia Ildefonso

Farm Fresh Foxies’ new player Pia Ildefonso. –FARM FRESH PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — Dave Ildefonso admitted he was surprised by his younger sister Pia’s decision to turn pro, but he said their entire family fully supports her upcoming Premier Volleyball League debut with the Farm Fresh Foxies.

Pia Ildefonso, whose older brothers Dave and Shaun are professional athletes in basketball, decided to not play out her remaining years with the Ateneo women’s volleyball team in the UAAP for a “fresh start” in the PVL.

“I was surprised. I said, ‘Do you really not want to play in the UAAP?’ Because the UAAP also offers a different experience,” said Dave, recalling her conversation with Pia, on Wednesday. “But of course, I’m happy for her, and that the three of us are now in the pros. Hopefully, the twins also make it.”

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“I’m happy for her and I support her. I’m sad I won’t be able to watch her games.”

Dave Ildefonso, who plays in the Korean Basketball League as an Asian import, watched the PBA on Tour game between Converge, where his father and PBA legend  Danny coaches, and Blackwater on Wednesday at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

During the Foxies guesting in the sports show “The Game’, Pia Ildefonso bared that both her brothers were also shocked when she opted to make a big leap to the PVL.

“Actually, there were really, really surprised. ‘Are you sure?’ That’s what Shaun told me. Because of course, there’s a lot of other people will say,” the 5-foot-9 middle blocker said.

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“At this point of my life, I just wanna go through it and deal with it and do what I love the most,” she added. “I set my mind to think na ‘let it be, just do it, no expectations.’ They fully support me as always.”

FILE – Dave and Shaun with their father Danny Ildefonso. -INQUIRER PHOTO

FILE – Dave and Shaun with their father Danny Ildefonso. -INQUIRER PHOTO

After sitting out in UAAP Season 85, the 20-year-old second-generation athlete only played one season with the Blue Eagles last year including preseason stints of Ateneo in the Shakey’s Super League and V-League and this UAAP season’s beach volleyball tournament.

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Amid her hiatus, Pia Ildefonso stressed that she didn’t stop working.

“I didn’t have a break. I still played beach volleyball. Of course, I continued with strength and conditioning,” she said.  “I never had the urge to completely stop to play. For me, that’s such a hard thing to do, especially that’s your routine mo day to night and it’s not that easy to stay away.”

Pia Ildefonso teams up with two-time NCAA champion coach Jerry Yee of College of Saint Benilde and the core of Lady Blazers bannered by Gayle Pascual, Season 98 Finals MVP Jade Gentapa, and Cloanne Mondoñedo, as well as fellow former Blue Eagle Joan Narit.

“I believe that there is no proper timeline for every athlete when it comes to deciding to go on pro. It can go in different ways,” she said.  “For me, I just really wanted a brand new environment to hone my skills, my personality in the court and everything in between. And I feel like what better way to start this part of my career which is Farm Fresh. The name itself is a perfect platform and perfect environment for me to pursue this next chapter of my career.”

Farm Fresh makes its PVL debut on June 27 against F2 Logistics at FilOil EcoOil Centre in San Juan City.

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The Foxies are grouped in Pool B with Petro Gazz, F2 Logistics, Choco Mucho, Cignal, and fellow new team Foton.

TAGS: Dave Ildefonso, Korean Basketball League, PBA on Tour, Pia Ildefonso, PVL

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