I already gave my farewell speech -- Morado on possible return to Ateneo
Hindi ko kasi talaga iniisip ‘yun eh and I already gave my farewell speech -- Jia Morado when asked if she'll change her mind and play her last eligibility year
Top setter Jia Morado stands by her decision to ‘graduate’ from the Ateneo de Manila Lady Eagles.
The newly acquired Creamline playmaker is not thinking about taking back what she said after the UAAP Season 79 women’s volleyball Finals about foregoing her last playing eligibility.
Morado’s status will remain as a former Lady Eagle.
“Hindi ko kasi talaga iniisip ‘yun eh and I already gave my farewell speech,” Morado, who will see action in the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference starting on July 1 as the newest member of the Cool Smashers, told ABS-CBN Sports Wednesday.
“So sa ngayon I’m focusing on what I’m doing now which is PVL nga and Creamline,” added the Psychology graduate.
Morado stressed that though she decided to leave the collegiate ranks, her passion for the sport will remain.
"Nu'ng pinili ko naman na gumraduate sa Ateneo I didn’t say goodbye to volleyball naman talaga eh in general. It was just in the collegiate level that I wanted to say goodbye to," she said. "So 'di ko naman kayang mag-goodbye talaga sa volleyball eh, parang I just wanted to move on to a new chapter like what I’ve said."
The UAAP Season 77 Best Setter in an emotional speech last May 6 announced her departure from the Ateneo team just hours after the Lady Eagles suffered a second straight championship series loss to archrival De La Salle University.
Her absence left a huge void in the Lady Eagles’ bid to reclaim the crown in UAAP Season 80.
Ateneo also suffered a major blow after Michelle Morente was cut from the squad for the second time in three years due to academic problems.
Morado shared that she was able to talk to Morente regarding her unexpected disqualification from the team.
“Siyempre malungkot siya kasi wala namang may gustong mangyari ‘yung nangyaring ‘yun,” she said. “Pero other than that nasa kanya naman ang desisyon kung ano ‘yung next move niya.”
But looking at the team’s composition for the next UAAP season, Morado is optimistic the Lady Eagles remain one of the teams to beat with Jho Maraguinot, Bea De Leon, Maddie Madayag, Season 79 rookie of the year Jules Samonte and Kat Tolentino at the helm.
“Kumpleto pa rin naman sila,” said Morado. “Marami pa rin naman sila doon and ‘yung naiwan naman sa team I know they know how to handle ‘yung kung sino ang naiwan sa kanila. Malakas pa rin sila sa palagay ko.”
Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles