Campos takes over Jags spikers

........................................................................................................................................................................................

After a three-year break, former Los Lunas High School volleyball coach Connie Campos has returned to the sidelines, taking the vacant Valencia High School volleyball job and continue her often-interrupted 34-year coaching career.

Campos said she didn't intend to come back to coaching after completing her tenture with the Tigers between 2005 and 2010.

"I retired for the first time in 2001," Campos said with a chuckle. "But somebody always talks me into coming back."

Campos, who is currently the intervention specialist at Century High School in Los Lunas, said she felt the urge to coach once more.

"I felt I still had something to offer to the kids," she said. "I was still in the area, so I thought I would go ahead and throw my name in the hat."

Campos began her head coaching career at Artesia High School, spending six years coaching the Lady Bulldogs before returning to her alma mater, Dexter High School for three years.

But Campos made her biggest mark by starting the girls volleyball program at the New Mexico Military Institute in 1989, where she coached 13 years before retiring in 2001.

She moved to Canutillo, Texas, but was coaxed out of retirement, coaching two years in Texas before coming to LLHS in January 2004, where she coached alongside brother, Bobby, then head football coach.

Campos takes over for former coach Vanessa Chavez, who led the Jaguars to their first district title as well as their first state volleyball berth in school history.

Campos said she will focus on "honing the team's fundamentals."

"I told the group that we want to be aggressive and attacking, but want to be under control,' she said. "They are very strong physically and hard workers. Its' going to be a fun year with all coaching changes this year."