Carly Ayres - Head Coach & 16-20 Team Coach
Hello! My name is Carly Ayres and I am the Head Coach of Nova Synchro. This is my first season with Nova and I am so excited to be a part of this amazing sport family. Our world has changed so much in 2020 and I am so thankful to be able to provide the opportunity for our young athletes to be active and share their passion of the water with each other.
As a head coach I will lead club development, support all of our coaches, promote swimmer and coach development and continue to build and promote our positive club culture. I will also be coaching our 16-20 program this season.
I have been coaching for 15 years. I started coaching in Manitoba and am very proud to have been a part of the start of Aquatica Synchro Club. Throughout my coaching career I have worked with provincial and national stream athletes, coached at provincial team camps and lead development programs. I am a Competition Development certified coach. In 2019 I received the Most Promising Coach Award from Alberta Artistic Swimming.
I first started artistic swimming at the age of 9 and had the opportunity to represent Manitoba at the 2007 & 2011 Canada Winter Games, compete at the 2008 & 2009 US Junior Nationals and the 2010 French Open. After competing at a national level I have continued to swim as a competitive masters swimmer. My goal as a coach is to support all athletes to enjoy sport for life.
Outside of coaching I enjoy spending time outside and hiking with my husband and daughter Ava, born March 2020.
Liz Scott - Club Manager & Teen Rec Team Coach
Hello! My name is Liz, and I am coaching our newest program, Teen Rec. I am also our Club Manager, so if you have any questions, or need caps & nose clips, I am happy to help! I am thrilled to be back for my 9th season coaching at Nova Synchro.
I have been involved with artistic swimming for over 25 years, and this will be my 16th season coaching. I have coached throughout Alberta, and in Dresden, Germany. From 2013-2018, I was part of the coaching team for Synchro Alberta’s Provincial Teams that attended the US Open, UANA Pan Ams, and SYNC. I have a Kinesiology degree and am a Certified Personal Trainer with the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology. I am also a Competition Development Certified coach. Outside of artistic swimming, I am a coach at Orangetheory Fitness. Coaching is my passion. I believe that working hard can be fun, and that swimmers are students of artistic swimming.
I am excited for another great season with Nova Synchro!
Becky Thera - 16-20 Team Coach
My name is Becky Thera and I am so excited to coach the 16-20 team with Nova this year! This is a hard-working, dedicated group of athletes, and I look forward to seeing them grow as a team. I believe we will have a lot of fun developing this team while building strong skills.
I am from Regina, SK, where I swam for 5 years at a Provincial and National level. I spent many years coaching various levels of athletes for Regina Synchro. This is my 12th season coaching, and my 5th season with Nova. I was previously the Technical Director and Outreach Coordinator for Synchro Saskatchewan and was recently part of the coaching staff for Alberta Artistic Swimming’s Provincial Teams, attending SYNC in Toronto this past summer. I completed my Masters of Fine Arts at the U of A in the spring of 2018. Alongside coaching, I am a practicing artist working with drawing, embroidery, video and choreography.
I truly love synchro and coaching, and I can’t wait to share that passion with a new group of athletes this season!
Samara Hipkin - 13-15 ‘S’ Team Coach
Hi there, My name is Samara but I generally go by Sam. A bit about me: I have been involved with artistic swimming for about 20 years now, my first 6 years as an athlete were spent with Nova, and I continued to swim with the Auroras for the next 8 years of my life, as well as coached at varying levels from rec to national stream for the past 12 years. Outside of artistic swimming I am also a certified practical herbalist and a level 4 certified Essentrics instructor, I am also currently in the midst of pursuing a vegan nutrition diploma and I intend to continue to pursue different avenues of education within the health and fitness sectors as this is where my passion truly lies.
I am incredibly excited to work with my 13-15 athletes this season, and to continue to help them on their paths into incredible athletes and young women.
Meaghan Hipkin - 13-15 ‘M’ Team Coach
Hello everybody! My name is Meaghan Hipkin, although most people know me as Meg. This is my fourth season coaching competitively for Nova and I am incredibly excited to be back! As far as my background in this wonderful sport, I have been involved in Artistic Swimming (Synchro) for the last 20 years, both as an athlete and a coach - the first 7 of those were spent as an athlete with Nova. I have been coaching in some capacity over the last 12 years and throughout that span of time I have coached virtually every level including pre-comp, recreational, provincial stream and national level athletes.
I love to coach and to witness athletes grow and achieve, whether it be learning how to do a back layout position or making a provincial or national team, I will do whatever I can to help them succeed. AS has always been my passion, my happy place and a second home where I could run towards to find peace, support and solace when I needed it in my life- and it is an absolute joy for me to be able to pass that along to the next generation of mermaids! I cannot wait to see how this season unfolds!
Naomi Grenke - 11-12 ‘N’ Team Coach
Hi, my name is Naomi Grenke and I am one of Nova’s 11-12 coaches this year. I am currently in my fourth year at the University of Alberta, where I am studying History and Political Science. This is my fifth year coaching, and my third year coaching competitively. I was one of Nova’s Learn to Synchro coaches before coaching competitive. I swam synchro with Nova for 9 years both at the provincial and national levels. Through these years I have learned hard work and teamwork which is something I hope to help develop in the next generation of swimmers. I have always loved the water and synchro became my passion at the age of 8. I am very excited to coach new swimmers and to pass on this passion.
This year I am planning to get my next level of coaching credentials. I am very excited to continue in my journey with Nova and the synchro community.
Jessica Gitzel - 11-12 'J' Team Coach
Hello, my name is Jessica Gitzel. I will be coaching one of Nova’s 11-12 teams this year. I have been involved with synchro for 10 years. I stared in recreational programs and then moved up to swim provincially. This year will be my third year of coaching with Nova. As a swimmer I fell in love with the sport for the amazing community it builds and the lasting friendships I have made. I hope to instill my love for artistic swimming in the next generation of swimmers. I am currently in my first year of university at the University of Alberta, I am studying elementary education. I am looking forward to what this season has at store and developing relationships with my swimmers.
Abigail Grenke - 9-10 Team Coach
My name is Abigail but most people at Nova call me Abs. I am excited to be coaching Nova’s 9-10 duet. I’m looking forward to working with this fun group of swimmers. I’m currently studying at the U of A, getting my bachelors in Kinesiology and Education . I was an artistic swimmer for 9 years and have been coaching for 5 years. I can’t wait to pass on my love of swimming to others. Nova has played a big part in my life for years. My goal is to create a fun and safe place for the swimmers, where they can learn to love a sport and to exercise.
Annaleise Walker- AquaGO Coordinator & Coach
My name is Annaleise! I will be coaching AquaGo and I am also the program coordinator. This is my 4 year coaching and I swam competitively with Nova for 5 years. I truly love artistic swimming, especially coaching it because I get to share my love and passion with the swimmers. I am currently in University working towards my Bachelor Degree in Social Work. Apart from coaching I have a huge passion for working out and weight lifting, so I am in the gym everyday! I look forward to this year and all the fun we are going to have despite the difficult circumstances.
Asha Nelson - AquaGO Coach
My name is Asha and I am one of the AquaGo coaches this year. I am currently training on the 16-20 team here at Nova and this will be my ninth year swimming as well as my 3rd year coaching. I’m so excited to be a part of our new swimmers’ experience in learning and developing new skills this year.
Gabrielle King - Little AquaGO Coach
Hi! My name is Gabrielle and I’m coaching one of our Little AquaGo teams! This is my second year coaching and I’m super excited to be working with these athletes. I am swimming with novas 16-20 team and this will be my 9th year swimming. I’m ready to have an incredible season with you all!
Cassie Pumphrey - Little AquaGO Coach
Hi, I’m Cassie & I’ve been swimming for 4 years! I started artistic swimming when I was 13 & I fell in love. I am very excited to be coaching Little AquaGo again this season. I love coaching because I enjoy watching the girls grow & develop a love of swimming.
Kim Phillips Langer - Substitute Coach
Randi Burton - Substitute Coach
Paige Skogstad - Substitute Coach
Bethany Jantz - Substitute Coach
Leah Demchuk - Substitute Coach