SOCCER: There will be a little something new at West Las Vegas this season: a boys soccer team. While in recent years, crosstown rival Robertson built a strong program and reached the Class 1A-3A championship game last season, the Dons have been without a squad.
That changed this season when David Morgan Montaño, a former nationally ranked runner while attending college at New Mexico Highlands University, was brought in to coach cross-country. He also agreed to build a boys soccer program.
“We have some kids who have been interested, and he was interested because the kids have been telling him they want to do it,” said WLV athletic director Valerie Villa-Lopez. “It’s kind of been in the works for a couple of years and we made the decision in June.”
The team will play an independent schedule its first two seasons before being eligible to play in a district and compete for the postseason.
COACHING: West Las Vegas also recently hired a volleyball coach, Lori Vigil. A Pecos graduate, Vigil coached dance for the Panthers for three years and also was a club volleyball coach for three years. She replaces Felix Flores, who was 4-34 in his two seasons. “We’re getting back to basics, the fundamentals and I’m implementing a new system that allows for unity,” Vigil said. “We’re going to pass the same way, serve the same way and hit the same way, so that we can be consistent.”
TENNIS: A new tennis complex is getting ready to open at Santa Fe High School within “the next month or so,” said Larry Chavez, Santa Fe Public Schools assistant superintendent of athletics and activities/school support. The nine-court complex has been in the works for a while. It is the start of a commitment to upgrade many of the athletic facilities across the Santa Fe Public Schools district, he said. “You’re going to start seeing a lot of renovations,” Chavez said.
ATHLETIC DIRECTORS: Other changes are afoot at Santa Fe Public Schools. When athletic director Larry Chavez was bumped up in the administration, he pushed for the reinstatement of on-site athletic supervisors for both Capital and Santa Fe. “It’s good to have a point of contact and somebody on site,” he said.
HALL OF FAME: A list of Los Alamos luminaries have been to the high school’s hall of fame, highlighted by soccer-playing sisters Molly and Ann Cernicek. The Cerniceks were on the team’s 1981 state championship team and Ann, now the girls head coach and formerly the boys head coach, was on the 1983 state championship squad. Golfer Kris Monaghan was a standout for the Hilltoppers and University of New Mexico, and played on the LPGA tour for 15 years. Girls tennis coach Bruce Cottrell was at the helm for 25 years, leading the ‘Toppers to nine state championships. Aubrey Jones-Woahn was a three-sport athlete, helping Los Alamos win the 2002 state championship, while also earning four letters in volleyball and three in basketball. Golfer Eddie Sanchez won the 1969 individual title and led the ‘Toppers to the team title that season. Renowned artist Sec Sandoval was captain of the Los Alamos football team in the 1940s.
UPCOMING THINGS TO SEE OR DO
CYCLING: Young riders will have a chance to learn how to work on their bicycles 6:30 p.m. Wednesday during a maintenance clinic at the La Vista Church of the Nazarene in Los Alamos. During the free event, riders will be shown how to tune up their bicycles, and receive inner tubes and chains.
WILDLIFE: Families are invited to the New Mexico Wildlife Center in Española on Aug. 22 for a free visit. Music, hands-on activities involving feathers, bird beaks and animal tracks, as well as advice on feeding birds and building a bird feeder are all on tap. The event runs from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. For more information, call 753-9505.