Los Alamos High School Men’s Volleyball Starts Season Strong

Los Alamos High School Men’s Volleyball team. Photo Courtesy LAPS


The Los Alamos High School Men’s Volleyball team kicked off its inaugural season with wins over Volcano Vista and Atrisco Heritage. They are one of 19 teams from around the state that have launched a men’s volleyball program.

“Several of the high schools in New Mexico have been working towards a men’s program,” explained Coach Joe Palmer.  In 2022, 19 schools showed interest in starting a volleyball program for boys. “Los Alamos was one of the programs having interest,” said Coach Palmer. “However, due to our Spring Break and the short notice we were unable to launch a program, although the interest was fairly large.”

This year was a different story. The 17-member team includes two 9th Graders, one 10th Grader, four 11th Graders and ten Seniors. Along with Coach Palmer, the team is coached by Natalie Passalacqua, Sophia Salazar,Bianca Enriquez and Gabby Vallejos.  The team Manager is Shyanne Garcia who played Varsity volleyball for the women’s team at LAHS.

“The players are excited about the program and the opportunity,” said Coach Palmer.  “They are really excited to be the first team at Los Alamos and start the men’s program.”  

Although the program is not currently supported by the New Mexico Activities Association (NMAA), the coaches continue to lobby and present the case for this to be a sanctioned sport. “From all indicators, the NMAA is receptive to the plans and knows it is a growing sport for boys,” Coach Palmer noted.

When asked how is coaching males different than coaching females, Coach Palmer said, “There are some differences, especially for me, as I have only coached females for my entire club and high school career.  This group of boys, because they have not played formalized/organized volleyball, are very curious and inquisitive about the strategy and the ‘whys’ of the game.  The female athletes I coach have generally been immersed in the game and understand the dynamics more, so that is a difference with this group.”

Members of this year’s team include Ewan Arnold, Kenneth Linn, Kellen Berstein, Andrew Johnson, Evan Martinez. Logan Perez, Emil Zaiduni, Benjamin Segler, Diego Hinojosa, Lenny Zhao, Ravijit Khalsa, Troy Makela, Antoni Galassi, Quintin Madsen, Tyghe Tripp, Shiv Antar Khalsa, and Matthew Daniels.

The season began March 28 and runs through May 6. The next tournament will be Saturday, April 15 in Albuquerque.