Swimcloud
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Brandt Nigro

Head Coach

Brandt Nigro was hired as the Army head swimming coach in the summer of 2019. Nigro comes to West Point after a two-year stint at NC State as an assistant coach for the swimming and diving teams. His primary responsibilities included working with the sprint freestyle and stroke events, and he also assisted in recruiting. He helped the Wolfpack men continue their dominance in the ACC with their fifth-straight league title in 2019 and the women completed an NC State sweep on the year with their own ACC title. The men finished fourth at the NCAA Championships in 2018 and 2019 and the women took seventh in 2019 and 18th in 2018 with Nigro on staff. While at NC State, Nigro saw 117 All-American performances, 37 individual ACC honors, 37 school records, and 164 NC State all-time top-10 performances. In 2019, he mentored the women sprinters to an ACC title, conference record, and All-America performance in the 200 freestyle relay. The year before, the men's 800 and 400 freestyle relays set NCAA, US Open and American records. With the success over the last couple of years, he was a member of the 2017-18 and 2018-19 ACC Men's Coaching Staff of the Year. In addition, he has guided athletes to elite international-level competitions, including, World Championships and the Olympics. Prior to his two years in Raleigh, Nigro had three successful seasons as an assistant coach at Marshall and UMBC. The 2016-17 season saw Nigro help Marshall to its most successful season in program history. The Thundering Herd women's team scored a program-record 724 points at the Conference USA Championships to finish third. Nigro, who served as the primary coach for the sprint and backstroke groups, guided Sirena Rowe to the 2017 NCAA Championships. Rowe, the 2017 Conference USA Freshman of the Year, was the first Marshall swimmer to qualify for the NCAA Championships since 2005. In addition, Marshall swimmers set 11 new school records, six pool records, and 10 NCAA B standards. The Thundering Herd also set high marks in the classroom, earning the nation's fifth-highest GPA. Prior to Marshall, Nigro coached the UMBC men's and women's swimming and diving teams to back-to-back conference championships in his two seasons in Baltimore. He was a part of the 2015-16 CCSA Men's Coaching Staff of the Year and the 2014-15 America East Women's Coaching Staff of the Year. In those two seasons, 18 school records and eight conference records were set. The team was led by Emily Escobedo, who earned NCAA All-American honors in the 200 breaststroke. While at UMBC, Nigro also served as the head senior coach of the Retriever Aquatic Club. At RAC, he guided the club through USA Swimming's Club Recognition Program, helping it to achieve Level 4 Recognition, the highest level for USA swim clubs. He also coached multiple Junior National/Futures qualifiers, Academic All-Americans, and Maryland Swimming Senior Champions. From 2014 to 2016, he served on the staff of USA Swimming's Eastern Zone Select Camp. Nigro, a native of Bristol, Conn., began his collegiate coaching career as a volunteer assistant on the staff at Wesleyan University. He also coached extensively at the high school and club levels in Connecticut. Nigro worked as an assistant coach with the Cheshire YMCA Sea Dog Swim Club and served as head coach of Brookfield High School Girls Swim and Dive team, winning a Southwest Conference championship in 2012. Nigro is an ASCA Level 4 certified coach. He was selected to the ASCA Fellows Class of 2016 and interned at the Sprint Salo Swim Camp at the University of Southern California. A former student-athlete at the College of Charleston, Nigro was a member of the 2003 Southern States Conference Championship team. He graduated with honors in 2005 with a B.A. in Political Science. In 2009, he graduated with honors from the University of Hartford with an M.S. and Sixth-Year Certificate in School Psychology. While in Connecticut, he worked as a state and nationally-certified school psychologist.
CW

Chris Waters

Diving Coach

Christopher Waters was welcomed to Army West Point as the new diving coach in September 2018. “We are very excited to welcome Chris as the next diving coach at Army West Point,” former head coach Mickey Wender said. “He has a wealth of experience having coached college diving for over 20 years, including 11 in the Big Ten. He is well-respected in the field and impressed me immediately with his desire to do whatever it takes to help get our program to the next level. Most importantly, his work ethic, professionalism, and personality makes him a great fit for Army West Point.” In his first season with the Black Knights, Waters coached a pair of divers in Daniel Alaimo and Serica Hallstead to the NCAA Zone A Diving Championships in Annapolis, Md. He additionally helped Alaimo claim a podium finish in his Patriot League Championships debut after the rookie placed third on the third on the 3-meter board. Under his guidance, Hallstead placed fourth and fifth, respectively, on the 1-meter and 3-meter. The pair of divers earned Second Team All-Patriot League honors. Hallstead was also a three-time Patriot League Female Diver of the Week throughout the regular season before earning Google Cloud Academic All-District First Team and Academic All-Patriot League recognition. Waters’ 20 years of coaching includes some notable stops at Colgate, Illinois, Tulane, Syracuse, Missouri State and Virginia Tech. He arrived on the banks of the Hudson after a one-year stint at Colgate, where he coached a pair of Patriot League finalists at the league championships. Prior to joining the Raiders, Waters spent 11 seasons as the head diving coach at Illinois. With the Illini, he mentored 24 Academic All-Big Ten divers, eight CSCAA Honorable Mention Scholar All-Americans and four Big Ten Distinguished Scholars. He developed seasonal training plans for his divers, while also incorporating strength training, dry land, belt spotting and water workouts. Waters also handled recruiting, meet management and team travel arrangements. Before embarking on his career at Illinois, Waters served as the diving coach at Tulane where he had a top-12 finisher on both the one and three-meter boards at the Conference USA Championships. Waters has experienced success at conference championships in the past, having coached a pair of Big East finalists while at Syracuse from 2004-05, five at Missouri State from 2003-04 on top of having 10 top-16 finishes at the Big East Championships during his time at Virginia Tech from 2000-02. Additionally, he coached an honorable mention All-America at Division III Connecticut College in 2000 and was tabbed the Missouri Valley Conference Diving Coach of the Year in 1999 after coaching the Male Diver of the Year and the men's one-and three-meter champions at Southwest Missouri State. Waters is a member of the United States Diving and Professional Diving Coaches Associations. He graduated from Castleton State University with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice in 1991 before continuing his education and earning his master's degree in health promotion and wellness management from Missouri State in 2002.
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Richard Salhus

Assistant Coach

Richard Salhus joined the Army West Point swimming and diving coaching staff as an assistant coach in August 2019. "Rich brings Power 5 coaching experience and knowledge to West Point from both the swimming and coaching perspective," Army West Point head swim and dive coach Brandt Nigro said. "At the college and club level, he has established great relationships with his athletes and has been able develop them to a higher level. His experience on the USA Junior National Team coaching staff will be invaluable to our program and our athletes. I had the opportunity to get to know Rich over the last few years from our time on the road recruiting. He is an exceptional recruiter and will get to know potential cadet-athletes athletes on a personal level to find the best fits for our program." Salhus joins the Black Knights' staff following a three-year stint at the University of Iowa, where he served as an assistant coach as well as the men's and international recruiting coordinator. Salhus, who was a former Hawkeye swimmer and Iowa graduate, returned to his alma mater prior to the 2016-17 season after spending five years as assistant head coach of the Iowa Flyers Swim Club before a brief stretch as the club's head coach. During the 2018-19 season, the Hawkeyes had five student-athletes -- two men and three women -- qualify for the NCAA Championships. The team swam to five school records and posted 64 top-10 times in program history. Iowa's men's team posted a 6-2 dual meet record, while the women's team swam to six victories. The Hawkeyes finished the season with five Big Ten weekly honors and the program had 11 top-eight finishes at the Big Ten Championships. In the classroom, 24 Hawkeyes earned Academic All-Big Ten honors, 11 were named Big Ten Distinguished Scholars, and seven were honorable mention CSCAA Scholar Athletes. Senior Ben Colin also became the first Hawkeye to be the Jim McKay Scholarship recipient. During the 2017-18 season, Iowa had seven NCAA qualifiers -- four men and three women -- and set 11 school records. The Hawkeyes' 200-free relay -- Will Scott, Jack Smith, Matt Kamin, and Joe Myhre -- earned honorable-mention All-America honors at the NCAA Championships, leading Iowa to a 38th-place team finish. The Hawkeye men went 5-1 in dual competition, including posting back-to-back victories over No. 21 Minnesota and at No. 23 Purdue. The Iowa women went 6-3 and the program swam to 69 NCAA qualifying marks with 10 Hawkeyes being honored with Big Ten weekly recognition throughout the course of the season. Academically, the Hawkeyes had 24 Academic All-Big Ten selections, nine Big Ten Distinguished Scholars and 12 student-athletes were named CSCAA honorable mention Scholar All-Americans. During his first season in Iowa City, the Hawkeyes broke 15 school records and tallied a top-26 finish at the NCAA Women's Swimming & Diving Championships. Fueled by first-team All-America performances from breast stroker Emma Sougstad and platform diver Calli Head, Iowa accumulated 26 team points to post its highest finish since 2005. The Hawkeyes went a combined 13-5 in dual competition -- 7-2 for the women, 6-3 for the men -- with a roster comprised of underclassmen. Iowa had 56 automatic or provisional NCAA qualifying standards during the season. Iowa student-athletes shined academically as seven Hawkeyes earned CSCAA Scholar All-America distinction, 23 were Academic All-Big Ten selections, and five were Big Ten Distinguished Scholars. Before returning to his alma mater, Salhus helped the Iowa Flyers achieve a number of accolades during his tenure. He coached a fourth-place place finisher in the 200 butterfly at the 2016 USA Olympic Swimming Trials, and an athlete named to 2016 USA Junior Pan Pacific Championship Team. Salhus also coached at the 2014 National Select Camp and was a 2015 Central Zone Select Camp assistant coach. He coached multiple winter and summer Junior National medalists. Coaching alongside Robert Pinter, Salhus was also instrumental in developing three swimmers that were selected to the National Select Camp and one athlete was chosen to the USA Swimming National Junior Team. The Johannesburg, South Africa, native was a four-year Iowa letterwinner, competing from 2007-11. He earned Big Ten Swimmer of the Week honors in 2008. As a prep, Salhus was a South African Junior National qualifier, winning numerous medals, including the gold in the 50 free and 50 fly. He was also a member of the South African Junior Squad and qualified for multiple South African Senior Nationals and Olympic Trials. He was a finalist in the 200 free and 50 fly and a gold medalist in the 400-free and 800-free relays. Salhus competed for Jon Rudd under Plymouth Leander in the United Kingdom where he held various records in Devon County. He went on to win silver in the 17/18-year-old 50 free and bronze in the 800-free relay at the British Youth Championships and he also competed in the Great Britain Open Championships, where he was a finalist in the men's 50 fly and semifinalist in men's 50 free. Salhus, who is ASCA Level 4 certified, graduated from the University of Iowa in 2011 with a bachelor's degree in health science with a minor health and sports studies. He and his wife, Mary, have two sons, Liam and Oliver.
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Jacob Siar

Assistant Coach

Nick Charriez joined the Army West Point swimming and diving coaching staff as an assistant coach in October 2019. “Nick is passionate, energetic and extremely outgoing,” Army West Point head swim and dive coach Brandt Nigro said. “He's a tireless recruiter and has already begun to make an impact on the recruiting fronts here at West Point. During his time at Johns Hopkins, he worked with and learned from two top-tier coaches in our sport in George Kennedy and Scott Armstrong. I'm excited to see the ideas and perspectives he brings to our staff. From the first day I met Nick, I could tell that he shared my vision for this program and is excited to bring new ideas to this program. He's focused and extremely hardworking and will have a positive impact on all facets of our program!” Charriez arrives on the banks of the Hudson following a three-year career as an assistant on the staff at Johns Hopkins before being elevated to Associate Head Coach and Director of Recruiting in the summer of 2018. With Charriez on the staff, the Blue Jays finished .500 or better in dual meets during all four seasons while compiling a 22-14-2 record. During his time at Johns Hopkins, the Blue Jay women finished in the top-10 at the NCAA Championships three times, with a pair of top-five finishes (2016, 2018). The Jays have combined for 104 All-America honors, including 55 first team selections. On the men's side, he helped coach the team to four straight fourth-place showings at the NCAA Championships. The JHU men have garnered 142 All-America honors, including 99 first team accolades. In addition, three Blue Jays won NCAA titles. Prior to his stint at Johns Hopkins, he spent two years as an assistant coach at Connecticut College. In his first year with the Camels, Charriez helped the men's team to a program-best third and 12th-place finishes, respectively, at the NESCAC and NCAA Championships. He also guided Samuel Gill to the 2014 NCAA title in the 100 Back. The women's team meanwhile placed fifth and 16th, respectively, at conference and national championships. In all, Charriez coached 11 Connecticut College swimmers to All-America honors and the teams combined to break 28 school records in 2014. Last season, the Camels broke a combined 14 school records and eight swimmers earned All-America honors. The men's team finished third at the NESCAC Championships and 19th at NCAAs, while the women took home sixth at the conference championship. Charriez was a four-year member of the Kenyon Lords swim team that won the 2013 NCAA Championship and finished second in 2011 and 2012. He was a three-time NCAA qualifier and earned All-America honors twice in the 100 Fly and once in the 200 Fly. In 2013, Charriez was a team captain and received the Coaches' Award in memory of Joseph O'Daniel, given by the coaches to a swimmer who best demonstrates the true spirit of Kenyon Swimming. Charriez graduated in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics.
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Jacob Siar

Assistant Coach

Jacob Siar joined the Army West Point coaching staff in July of 2017 and enters his third season as an assistant coach for the men's and women's swimming and diving team. This past season, Siar helped the men's and women's teams pick up a pair of second-place finishes at the Patriot League Championships and the ECAC Championships. The two teams combined to shatter nine Academy records, while the men collected nine event victories at the four-day championship meet, including a trio of relay wins opposite service academy rival Navy. The men's side put up its second-highest total score at the league championships since 2001. He also coached 14 All-Patriot League swimmers. During his second year with the team, 15 swimmers earned All-Patriot League recognition after the men and women combined for eight event victories and six Academy records at the Patriot League Championships. The 568 points put up by the women was the second-highest total at the four-day championship meet since 2001, while the men's total of 780.5 was the second-most, at the time, since 2001. In his first season on the Black Knights' staff, the men and women placed second at the Patriot League Championships and posted their highest total scores in the past 16 years. In total, the two squads combined for 17 All-Patriot League selections. Siar arrived at West Point following a four-year college career at North Carolina State and Auburn. He graduated from N.C. State in the spring of 2017 with a degree in Sport Management. He was a member of the Wolfpack that won back-to-back Atlantic Coast Conference Championships in 2015 and 2016, while also contributing to the men’s and women’s 2017 ACC title as a volunteer assistant coach. The 2016 squad also finished fourth at the NCAA Championships and eighth in 2015. Siar also worked with U.S. Olympic Gold Medalist Cullen Jones, World Champion and Olympic qualifier Simonas Bilis of Lithuania, and Denmark Olympic qualifier Anton Ipsen while at N.C. State. Individually, Siar competed at the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2012 and 2016. He competed in the 200 backstroke twice and finished 24th in the 100 backstroke in 2016.
CS

Christa Saunders

Assistant Coach

Christa Saunders joined the Army West Point swimming and diving staff as an assistant coach and the women's recruiting coordinator on July 1, 2020. Saunders arrived at West Point following a one-year stint as an assistant coach at East Carolina. In her lone year with the Pirates, she helped the men’s team capture the 2020 American Athletic Conference (AAC) title. ECU won five individual conference events and four relay championships en route to claiming the team title with 18 athletes earning all-conference accolades in one or more event. Three athletes qualified or the NCAA Championship meet and received All-America honors with her assistance. In Saunders primary group that she worked with, there was one men’s AAC champion and seven total AAC podium finishers. Prior to her time with the Pirates, Saunders spent two seasons as an assistant coach at UConn. While in Storrs, Conn., she helped the Huskies post 395 personal best times, 26 NCAA ‘B’ qualifying marks and 27 school records in addition to registering 149 top-10 all-time performances and four AAC Championship event victories. Before joining the UConn coaching staff, Saunders served as a graduate assistant for two years at Gardner-Webb. She helped coach the Bulldogs’ first male NCAA qualifier in three events who additionally was named the 2016 Elite 90 Award winner. During her time in Boiling Springs, N.C., the Bulldogs had 12 individual Coastal Collegiate Sports Association (CCSA) champions and posted 11 NCAA ‘B’ cuts with 370 personal best marks to go along with 38 school records. Saunders was a two-year letterman at William & Mary before she suffered a career-ending shoulder injury and served as a student assistant coach for her final two seasons (2013-15), while obtaining a Bachelor of Science in kinesiology. The Tribe won the 2015 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) men’s championship in 2015 after ending UNCW’s 13-year championship run. The William & Mary women placed third in both 2014 and 2015. The Tribe posted 45 school records, five CAA Championship records and 45 NCAA ‘B’ qualifying times during Saunders time in Williamsburg, Va.
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Jen Schumacher

Other

Jen Schumacher, M.S., CMPC, is a Performance Psychology Trainer at the Center for Enhanced Performance. Schumacher works with cadets and teams on the psychological aspects of elite performance, providing services for Swimming & Diving, Softball, Baseball, Women’s Basketball, Volleyball, and Gymnastics. Additionally, she works with cadets on the mental aspects of the Survival Swimming course and serves as the Performance Psychology Program’s Internship Coordinator and teaches PL360, Psychology of Elite Performance. Schumacher came to West Point in January of 2016 from California State University, Fullerton, where she taught sport and exercise psychology in the Kinesiology Department and provided sport psychology services to the Athletic Department, earning Faculty Member of the Year in 2015. Schumacher earned her Master's Degree in Sport Psychology at California State University, Fullerton, studying under Dr. Ken Ravizza, and is a Certified Consultant through the Association of Applied Sport Psychology. She is originally from Irvine, Calif., and now resides in Tarrytown, N.Y., with her husband, Scott.