Head Coach, Senior Swim Coach
Coach Galen has been
involved in aquatics for most of his life, beginning as an age
group swimmer and a water polo player for several local clubs.
Growing up in Yorba Linda, Galen attended Esperanza High School and
played water polo and swam for the Aztecs all four years. Galen
attended California State University at Fullerton where he played
water polo and eventually graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in
Galen joined the
Esperanza aquatics coaching staff in 1987 and worked as an
assistant coach under his mentor, Doug Kimberly, for several years
winning California Interscholastic Federation championships in 1992
and 1994. In 1996 Galen took over the head coaching position and
continued in the tradition of excellence at Esperanza by returning
to the CIF finals in 2001 and winning the title in 2003. Galen has
been honored as the CIF Coach of the Year on two occasions, Orange
County Coach of the Year, and several top 10 finishes in CIF
Division 1 swimming.
Galen was also asked to
lead and organize the SOPAC regional development camps for United
States Water Polo, during his tenure at Esperanza. Many of the
athletes involved in those development camps went on to play at the
major college level and the Olympic Games.
Galen has been married to
his beautiful wife Beth for over 20 years and is the proud father
of both his daughters, Jessica and Ashley who swam and played water
polo together at Long Beach City College. Galen intends to carry on
his philosophy of hard work, quality character, and team work to
the EAST program and is excited for the future of our program and
Jim began his coaching career in 1959 when he started a swim
team at the Lakewood YMCA. He took his 1st swimmer to the
National Championships in 1964 and by 1971 had 31 swimmers qualify
for Nationals. His best known swimmer was Susie Atwood who
Jim taught to swim at age 5 and went on to become a 6 time Kiphuth
High Point Award winner at US Nationals establishing 18 American
records and 23 National titles in backstroke and the I.M. She
was a 2 time Olympian and World Record holder in the 200
backstroke. During his tenure with the Lakewood team, Jim
placed 8 swimmers on the USA Olympic Teams accounting for 8
medals. More recently, Jim coached at the Ohio State
University where his teams won 5 consecutive Big Ten Conference
Championships with 48 swimmers awarded Big Ten Swimmer of the Year
honors, 2 OSU Athlete of the Year recipients and 1 NCAA National
Champion, 1 AIAW National Champion and was twice names Big Ten
Coach of the Year. Jim encourages his student-athletes to
become involved in the community and campus events and stresses the
importance of academic success. His team garnered a consistent
team GPA of 3.02-3.31. EAST is proud to have Jim as part of
our coaching staff.
Annette Spicer Nielsen
Gold Swim Coach
Annette Spicer Nielsen grew up as one of the youngest of seven children in an aquatic swim/water polo family. She began swimming at the age of 4 years, where her parents Donald and Anna Spicer helped in begin the Fullerton Aquatics Swim Team (FAST). After 14 years of club swimming, becoming an All American Distance High School swimmer, winning 3 consecutive CIF titles, Annette went on to receive a full scholarship to the University of Arizona.
Upon finding out her father was ill, she came home enrolled and competed at Fullerton College from 1987-1990. While attending Fullerton College she went on to win the State Championships in the 200 and 500 free events. In 2010, Annette was inducted to the Fullerton College Sports Hall of Fame. And to this day still holds team records.
From 1989 to 2013, Annette was the Head Age Group coach of FAST. There she developed and guided many swimmers to the Jr. Olympics, Jr. National, Sr. National and Olympic Trials.
Annette believes that technique and the focus on middle distance swimming will make a swimmer well rounded, with the opportunity to perform and excel in the events they love, whether it being distance or sprint swimming. She attributes a lot of her achievements and her love of coaching to her mentor, the late Kevin Perry, FAST coach 1991-2008 (coach/mentor of Olympic 2012 Gold Medalist, Tyler Clary).
Annette's biggest supporters are her husband Kory and 2 beautiful girls Nicolette and Paige. She is so happy to be a part of the EAST family values and the philosophies in which the team stands for.
Water Polo Director, Senior Women's Polo
Jessica grew up on the pool deck attending all of her dad's
games, watching and learning as she went. She played water
polo for EAST and swam competitively with the Eastlake EagleRAYS
through 8th grade. She played water polo and swam at the
varsity level for 4 years earning the Aztec Award for her success
and leadership in and out of the pool. As a Junior, she and
her sister Ashley were part of a team that made the CIF Division 1
playoffs for the first time in 6 years. She was named Team
Captain her senior year. She then attended Long Beach City
College and played for the current Women's National Coach, Chris
Oeding. She was named Team Captain again as a sophomore and
was twice named to the All-Conference Team. After she
finished playing water polo at LBCC, she was brought on to coach
the Esperazna High School Frosh/Soph girls water polo team and
coached the team to back to back league championships in her first
two years. This year she also coached the High School boys
Frosh/Soph water polo and swim teams.
Recently she was hired on at Cypress College as an assistant
coach to the Women's Water Polo team. She will be
transferring to Cal State Fullerton in the fall as a History major
and is studying to be a High School teacher.
Swim Lessons Director, Sr. Women's Polo
Ashley has been involved with swimming and water polo since she attended her dad's CIF water polo game at 2 days old. She grew up primarily playing Soccer while playing Water Polo and Swimming in the off-season. When entering high school, she chose to focus on Water Polo and Swimming. She played water polo and swam at the varsity level for 4 years at Esperanza High School earning Most Valuable Player and 1st Team all League Honors. As a sophomore, with her sister Jessica as a Junior, they were part of a team that reached CIF Division 1 playoffs for the first time in 6 years. She is attending Long Beach City College and was named the Team Captain and earned All-Conference and All American honors as a Redshirt Freshman in water polo last year. This year she was brought on to coach the Esperanza High School Frosh/Soph Girls Water Polo team along-side her sister. They successfully coached the girls to their second league championship in a row. Ashley has been granted early acceptance to Cal State Fullerton as a Business Finance Major and will attend both Cal State Fullerton and Long Beach City College in the fall so she can play water polo one more year.
Silver Swim Coach
Brock was a four-year varsity letterman swimmer at
Esperanza High School. He received the award of "Swimmer of the
Year" all years he attended the school. He is currently a record
holder at Esperanza for the 200 Medley Relay. After high school, he
continued his athletic career at Cypress College and became an
All-American in four events: the 200 Medley Relay, 200 Freestyle
Relay, the 400 Freestyle Relay, and the 100 Backstroke. He also
holds the school record in the 100 Backstroke. During his time at
Cypress, he was named the Team Captain as
Junior/Bronze Swim Coach
Kyle has been part of the EAST family since the day the
team began, first as a swimmer and now a part of the coaching
staff. He began coaching in 2017 as the Pre-Team coach and is
now currently the Junior and Bronze coach. Kyle was a club
swimmer for 13 years, being a Junior Olympic swimmer for 10 of
those years. He graduated from Esperanza High School where he
was a Varsity swimmer, scholar athlete and Aztec Award
winner in 2018. Kyle is currently attending Cypress
College where he is majoring In Kinesiology/Sports Psychology. He
will also be part of the Cypress Charger Swim Team. Kyle
hopes to pass on his enthusiasm and love for swimming and to
encourage a strong work ethic and a never ever give up attitude to
his swimmers so they can enjoy swimming as much as he has.