ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The University of New Mexico volleyball team is currently hosting its final camp of the summer, a team camp for high school athletes. The camp runs from Friday, July 18, through Sunday, July 20.
The camp has included 54 teams, which is the most UNM could take this year, and about 600 people in the Johnson Center for this weekend. The teams aren’t just from the New Mexico area but from Colorado and Texas as well. There are nine courts that involve play and there are two rounds of pool play of three teams on each court. The teams will play two rounds Friday and two rounds Saturday with the finals on Sunday.
“There are all different levels here, including varsity, junior varsity and ninth grade teams,” said head coach Jeff Nelson. “They are getting a look at some other teams from around the area and we have teams from three different states. It is a good way for the high school coaches to get a good look at their own team and also other teams from the area.”
There are many familiar faces around the camp, including All-American alumna Jeannie Fairchild. She played for the Lobos under coach Nelson from 2006-08 and is now coaching at the high school level with former Lobos Jordan Russell and Lexi Ross. Fairchild brought her team to camp and is loving being back in the Johnson Center. “It’s a cool experience,” said Fairchild. “Bringing it back to UNM is a really neat experience. It’s awesome to be apart of it here.”
The Lobos have been busy working hard all summer with other camps. The team camp is the final camp of the four that were available. UNM put together a youth camp and an individuals skills camp in June. The advanced skills camp was held last week.
“It is a great opportunity for us to expose our Lobo volleyball program and our players can be visible for the high school girls to see and be role models for," said Nelson. "It’s a win-win for everyone. This summer, in all of our camps, we have had the most kids we have ever had.”
Lobo volleyball is set to open its season on August 29 with a doubleheader against Seattle U and 2013 NCAA runner up Texas. Season tickets and tickets for the Texas match are available at the Lobo Ticket Office in The Pit.