Gulf Swimming
Level 1

Ambush Coaching Staff

Erik Cozadd Aquatics Director

Erik Cozadd (Ambush Coach & Team Administrator) - Has been the Aquatics Director for both Lufkin & Nacogdoches pools since May 2007. His swimming background began as a freshman with the NHS swim team. In the fall of 1998 Erik began his collegiate three year swimming career as a fighting Cardinal at Wheeling Jesuit University, West Virginia. Erik earned his Bachelors in Psychology & Spanish in December 2002.

Erik's main duties with Ambush involve administrative work, but he also helps coach when needed. Now resides in his hometown of Nacogdoches with his daughter Ava.

Coaching Achievements:

  • East Texas Swim Team/Ambush Coach 2007-2022
  • Team Ambush Coach & Administrator 2012-2022
  • Gulf Masters Swimming board member 2009-2011
  • USA Swimming Meet Director Certified, CPO, LGI, ASCA Level I
  • USA Swimming Coach Certified & Registered USA Swimmer

Swimming Achievements:

  • Texas 5A State Qualifier 1997 & 1998 50 Freestyle
  • Awarded Swimming Scholarship to Wheeling Jesuit University Spring 1998
  • Bluegrass Mountain Conference Medalist 1999, 2000, & 2001
  • Junior National Qualifier, ETEX 1998
  • United States Masters Swimming member since 2007
  • USMS Nationals 2008, 2009, 2015, 2017
Derek Theiss Head Coach

Derek Theiss  – swam competitively throughout his high school career for Space City Aquatics team near Houston, TX. After high school graduation, he became the Head Summer League Coach for the North Channel Space Cowboys. After a brief stint at Texas State University, in which he was a starting water polo player for the university’s club polo team, he moved back to Houston to coach for North Channel Aquatics.

Derek's main focus for each practice is to maintain a fun learning environment helping each swimmer take the right steps at the right time towards competitive swimming. Another goal of his is to teach kids how to transfer the good things they learn in swimming into their daily lives.


  • Space Cowboys Head Summer League Coach 2007-2008
  • North Channel Nadadores Head Summer League Coach 2009-2012
  • North Channel Age Group Coach 2009-2013
  • USA Coach Certified
Philip Franke Assistant Coach

Philip Franke (Nacogdoches Senior & Intermediate Coach) Coach Phil started coaching for Ambush Swim Team in June of 2020. Prior to his coaching career he was a member of the Mike Moses Middle School Swim Team, Nacogdoches High School Swim Team, Doches' Dolphins Summer Swim Team, and the Ambush Swim Team. In his 6 years of competitve swimming he achived many milestones such as NHS Team Captain, District Champion, Regional Finalist, and State Finalist. He is currently studying Sports Business at Stephen F. Austin State University, where he plans to graduate in May 2023. 

Coach Phil's primary goals are to build good character into all his athletes and help them achieve their swimming goals of Region, State, Sectionals, Trials, or Olympics. He is dedicated to coaching his athletes to the best of his abilities. 



  • NHS Team Captian 2018 - 2020
  • Regional Qualifier 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
  • State Qualifier 2019 & 2020
  • USA Swimming Certified Coach
  • Doches' Dolphins Assistant Coach 2020 - Present
  • East Texas Summer Swim League Treasurer 2022
Eddie Adams Assistant Coach

Coach Eddie has 40 years of coaching experience in Gulf Swimming and is currently on the Board of Directors for Gulf Swimming.  He Coaches part time at Lehmann Aquatic Center and is involved with Fitter Faster Clinics.  His full time occupation is as a chicken farmer West of Nacogdoches.

Board of Directors