Vargas adds Olympian to Stanford water polo staff | News | Palo Alto Online |


Vargas adds Olympian to Stanford water polo staff


Stanford men's water polo coach John Vargas announced the addition of Olympian and former National Player of the Year Brett Ormsby to his staff as an assistant coach.

"We are very fortunate to have someone of Brett's caliber join our water polo staff," said Vargas. "He is an excellent coach as well as a teacher. Most importantly, his values and daily work ethic align perfectly with Stanford's approach to coaching and teaching scholar-athletes."

Brett Ormsby/Cathedral Catholic
Ormsby joins Vargas, assistant coach Jonathan Barnea and volunteer assistant coach Lee Maurer on the Cardinal coaching staff.

"I am thrilled to join the men's water polo coaching staff at Stanford," said Ormsby. "It is a coaching dream come true for me to be able to interact daily with the bright and hard-working student-athletes in the program."

A member of the 2004 United States Water Polo Olympic Team, Ormsby has enjoyed a decorated career as both a player and coach in the sport.

"I look forward to working with coach Vargas and his staff to produce success in the pool and to enhance the qualities within each player that make Stanford scholar-athletes so successful beyond graduation," Ormsby added.

With the USA national team, he competed in the 2004 Athens Olympics. The U.S. finished seventh. Ormsby scored against Hungary.

He enjoyed a brief, but successful career with Team USA, which ended at age 21 due to injury. In addition to the Olympics, he also played in the 2003 FINA World Championships and won gold in the 2003 Pan American Games.

A four-time All-American and 2004 National Player of the Year while at UCLA, Ormsby completed his standout Bruin career (2001-04) with 243 goals in 99 career matches. He was the team captain when UCLA won the 2004 NCAA championship.

His career goal total is second in UCLA history and his career 2.45 goals per game average is first.

Ormsby earned Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches first team All-America honors each of his final three seasons with the Bruins.

He was also a four-time All-MPSF selection, earning first-team laurels his final three seasons.

The driver led the Bruins in scoring each of his four seasons, was a two-time finalist for the prestigious Peter J. Cutino Award (2003 and 2004).

After multiple shoulder and abdominal surgeries, Ormsby retired after his glittering 2004 season.

He quickly transitioned to a successful coaching career, allowing him to extend his influence in the sport to over two decades.

The head coach at Cathedral Catholic High School since 2008, where he also taught history, Ormsby also founded and coached at Del Mar Water Polo Club.

He developed Del Mar Water Polo Club into a highly-ranked club among the nation's best 16-and-under and 18-and-under programs.

After taking over the Cathedral Catholic program, Ormsby quickly established Cathedral as one of the top water polo programs in San Diego.

Ormsby led the Dons to five San Diego Section Championships in his nine years with the program, including the first CIF championship in school history in 2009, and four straight CIF Championships from 2012-15.

He was voted the San Diego High School Coach of the Year three times during his tenure at Cathedral Catholic.

Ormsby has also spent five years coaching for the USA national program at the Cadet, Youth, and Junior levels, most recently guiding the Youth team to a gold medal in UANA Pan-American Championships in July, 2017.

— Stanford Athletics

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