One factor that really differentiates NGAC vs. other clubs is the engagement of our coaches during the training and swim meets.  We do not have a "sit and watch" coaching staff.  Our coaches are extremely hands-on and focused, generally seen cheering along the pool deck during competition.

 

Sean Halpate (Head Coach) Head Coach Sean Halpate is our most colorful and vocal coach, occasionally seen at our major meets with his hair died "NGAC red" to show his support for the swimmers.  He typically coaches our 11 and older swimmers and other experienced members.  Coach Sean runs very intense training sessions, pushing his swimmers hard during practice so that they can be their best during meets.

Get to know more about Coach Sean below...

Question

Answer

How long have you been swimming and what various teams club, HS, college, etc. did you participate on?

Since I was 4yrs old. (42 years) Swam for the Weirton WV, Akron OH & Galion OH YMCA’s. 

High schools – Galion and Ashland.

Then the East regional USS swim team until I was 20.

What is your fondest memory from being a competitive swimmer (success, failure, specific meet, accomplishment, etc.)?

My most vivid memory is qualifying at the final meet of the season for districts as a Freshman in high school for the 100 breast and 10 of my team mates jumping in the water to celebrate. (usually a disqualification!!) Judges overlooked it that day. Whew!

What do you know now as a coach that you wish you knew or understood when you were a swimmer?

I know so much more about the "mental side" of swimming.  How to approach practice, how to prepare for a race/meet.  Most importantly, how to focus on what "you" are doing and not everyone around you.

​Clearly it has helped me approach "life situations" as well.  Would to have known this 30 years ago.

What are your favorite and least favorite events?

Favorite events – 50, 100 Free, 100 & 200 Breast & 200 IM.

Least favorite – 100 & 200 Fly and “the Mile”.

How long have you been coaching?

Combined 13 years. 

What is your favorite thing about being a coach?

Helping kids improve. I love to see the reactions when kids improve a time, win a race/heat or accomplish a goal.  They just “light up”!  I love positive energy.

I love the positive/fun energy that kids on the team bring.  They know how to have fun, even when working their tails off!  It can easily make you forget if you have had a "bad day" once you enter the crazy swim world.

What else would you want people to know about you?

I am a proud U.S. Army Veteran of Desert Storm and the Noriega liberation.  I love music, going to concerts, the outdoors, hiking, golf and spending time with my family.

What else would you like for people to know about your fellow coaches?

​Tim- He brings a ton of knowledge and great spirit to the team.  I have known him for 35 years and he puts his heart into everything he does.  Awesome guy to have by your side.

​Ray- Nobody has more "style" than Ray.  Super swim knowledge and great all around guy.  Glad his is part of the staff now.

​This is a great group of coaches.  Awesome to be a part of this "family".

 

 

Tim Bateman (Coach) Coach Tim has been part of the NGAC Stingrays for many years.  Tim typically works with a range of swimmers in age and skillset, from the newest to the most experienced.  He runs very fun and competitive training sessions where he engages closely with individual swimmers to tailor drills to individual needs.

Get to know more about Coach Tim below...

Question

Answer

How long have you been swimming and what various teams club, HS, college, etc. did you participate on?

I started at age 12, swam with Galion YMCA, Galion High School, and Ohio Northern University.  Also competed in AAU swim meets and ran triathlons during the off seasons.

What is your fondest memory from being a competitive swimmer (success, failure, specific meet, accomplishment, etc.)?

My fondest memory of swimming is when I set our high school record in the 100 fly.  I found out a few years ago the record stood for almost 25 years.

What do you know now as a coach that you wish you knew or understood when you were a swimmer?

I have learned how to strike a balance between hard work and having fun.  Both are necessary to truly succeed.

What are your favorite and least favorite events?

My favorite events are the 100 fly, 200 fly, and 100 backstroke.  My least favorite event is any event where a lap counter is required.

How long have you been coaching?

Almost 7 seasons.

What is your favorite thing about being a coach?

I think one of my favorite things about coaching is seeing the enthusiasm on an athlete's face when a technique "clicks in" for the first time and the successes that follow.

Also, the kids are a lot fun.

What else would you want people to know about you?

I play a mean bass guitar, "enjoy" golf, and losing an entire afternoon on the back of the motorcycle.   

What else would you like for people to know about your fellow coaches?

Sean has a way of reaching each athlete and always focusing on improvement. 

 

Lindsay Hope (Coach)

Question

Answer

How long have you been swimming and what various teams club, HS, college, etc. did you participate on?

I have been swimming since I was 9 years old. I first was on the Ridgewood YMCA breakers swim team in Ridgewood, NJ for a year on their developmental (non-competitive) swim team to make sure I really loved swimming. After a year at Ridgewood, I decided to move programs to the Wyckoff YMCA Sharks in Wyckoff, NJ. Wyckoff was ranked 3rd in NJ and 51st in the nation overall in 2012. I stayed on this team until I was 13, until I decided to pursue lacrosse! Throughout the summers until I was 18, I competitive swam on a lake team in Green Pond, NJ where I placed 3rd overall in the 50 Butterfly and 100 freestyle in the “A” league championships.

What is your fondest memory from being a competitive swimmer (success, failure, specific meet, accomplishment, etc.)?

My favorite memory was a meet called the Summer Solstice at Princeton University. I was 12, and it was a meet where certain races would have music playing and if you won that race, you would win a prize! It was so fun and exciting. It was a great way to kick off the long course swim season.  

What do you know now as a coach that you wish you knew or understood when you were a swimmer?

I wish I understood that failure was okay. I would get upset when I didn’t finish a race with a best time, or when I didn’t get a certain time cut. However, practice truly makes progress. If you show up to practice and work hard, your times will pay off! 

What are your favorite and least favorite events?

My favorite events are the 200 IM, the 100 backstroke and the 100 butterfly! My least favorite events are the 200 fly, 1650 freestyle and 200 breaststroke. 

How long have you been coaching?

I have been coaching since I was 13, so almost 11 years! 

What is your favorite thing about being a coach?

I love watching swimmers accomplish their goals! Whether it’s a best time, championship time standard, or trying a new stroke at a meet- it makes me feel so great as a coach! 

What else would you want people to know about you?

I am a graduate nursing student at Duquesne University. I recently moved to Pittsburgh last month, but grew up in New Jersey my whole life. I am a graduate of Stockton University with a degree in Health Science, and I also played college lacrosse! I love trying new foods, running, and coffee. I’m so excited to coach this season! 

 

Alex Poskey (Coach)

Question

Answer

How long have you been swimming and what various teams club, HS, college, etc. did you participate on?

I have been swimming since I was 7 years old, and I loved every second of it! I swam for Avonworth during the summer, and Northgate in the fall/winter months! 

What is your fondest memory from being a competitive swimmer (success, failure, specific meet, accomplishment, etc.)?

My fondest memory from being a competitive swimmer was finishing first during the championship meet in a race. It was a long day, but afterwards I remember one of the coaches running out after me and saying you are an amazing swimmer, and I can’t wait to continue to watch you grow. 

What do you know now as a coach that you wish you knew or understood when you were a swimmer?

I know more now how the time and the preparation it takes to get ready for a meet, or even get ready for a practice! I know now that you are only responsible for you, and you are your greatest fan and teacher!

What are your favorite and least favorite events?

My favorite events were always the 100 Free, and the 100IM. My least favorite events were always 200 Fly

How long have you been coaching?

Coaching swim this will be my 2nd year, but coaching all sports in general this will be my 6th year! 

What is your favorite thing about being a coach?

I love to help kids learn and grow! I am a teacher during the day, so teaching and coaching are one in the same for me! Watching a child improve and then watching the smile on their face when they realize they are crushing their goals is the best feeling in the world! 

 

What else would you want people to know about you?

I run a small business along with an Etsy. page on the side, and I love to read, go to sporting events, and drink iced coffee all day long! 

 

 

Ray Coleman (Coach)

Jessie McKelvey (Coach) Coach Jess has been with NGAC for several years now.  When she is not coaching the Northgate/Avonworth high school swim team, you'll find her from time to time at practices helping out with the older kids.