April 11, 2012
New Mexico Volleyball's head coach Jeff Nelson and his assistants Lisa Beauchene and Ben Wallis have announced the signing of Alijah Gunsaulus, a talented outside hitter to the 2012 incoming freshman class.
Gunsaulus, a native of the volleyball powerhouse Los Alamitos High School in southern California comes to UNM Volleyball with many years of high level volleyball experience. With four straight years as Sunset League Champs, Alijah captained her team to a CIF Championship during her senior year while placing CIF runner-up once and semifinalist twice during her high school stint. In 2010 and 2011 Gunsaulus was chosen to the prestigious CIF Dream Team - selected as the most valuable players of the tournament. She was also selected First Team All Sunset League, All CIF, and Second Team All-County her senior year.
"Alijah plays volleyball at a very high level and will come in with a ton of experience. She will push for playing time immediately," says Jeff Nelson.
Aljiah is a skilled, six-rotation outside hitter who will add winning experience to the Lobo volleyball lineup. At 5-10, her talent is said to match the likes of Lisa Meeter, former Lobo volleyball great. During her six years of club volleyball, Gunsaulus has qualified for the Junior Olympics every year, winning the championship in the 14-and-under division.
Alijah's passion for volleyball started at an early age. Alijah's mom Nicole played volleyball at the University of Houston while her four aunts also played collegiate volleyball for Concordia University, UCSB, and two at University of San Diego. Alijah has two siblings - brother Isaiah, 9 and sister Jaedyn, 7.
"I chose New Mexico for the great coaching staff, all of the facillites, and the support the players had when I visited", says Gunsaulus. "I can't wait to be a Lobo next year and see all that UNM has to offer."
Gunsaulus joins Ashley Kelsey of James Campbell High School in Oahu, Hawai'i, and Skye Gullatt of Smoky Hill High School in Denver, Colo. for the 2012 season.