Crush Coaching Staff

Chris Brigham

1.jpg

Chris played as a catcher at Rancho Bernardo High School, where he graduated in 2002. After graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and was deployed in Iraq where he served for 14 months. 

In 2004, Chris attended San Diego Mesa College and was a walk-on for the Olympian baseball team. In 2006 Chris received an athletic scholarship in baseball at Patten University where he was the starting catcher, and team captain while studying Psychology. While there, Chris led the team to their first-ever Regional Tournament. Before his senior year there, Chris was called back to continue serving his country. Brigham has spent a total of 3+ years in combat zones with the US Army units such as the 160th SOAR, 18th Military Police Brigade, 82nd Airborne Infantry BCT, and the 101st Infantry BCT. In doing so, SGT Brigham earned 3 Army Commendation Medals for his role as an Instructor at the Baghdad Police Academy and as a Team and Patrol Leader. Chris was also the key factor in the largest covert arms trafficking case in this War’s history. During his tenure with the US Army, SGT Brigham has also been awarded the Global War on Terrorism Medal, GWOT Expeditionary Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Afghan Campaign Medal, National Defense Medal, and 2 NATO-ISAF Medals, and an Army Achievement Medal. Patten University has retired Chris's number. 

 

Chris has coached locally since 2018, he is a San Diego Sheriff, and is a Crush catching as well as  11u coach. 

Jason Brunansky

I0000umbQMx2SVlg_edited.jpg

Coach Jason “Bruno” Brunansky is a 2008 Poway High alum. He lettered three years in baseball for head coach Bob Parry, hitting .371 and .331 his junior and senior seasons as the team’s lead-off hitter. He was named All-Palomar League in 2007 and was a Tampa Bay Rays Scout Team member. He was also a member of the all-academic team, graduating with a 4.0 GPA and was in the top five percent of his class. Jason played at The University of Kansas for four years after high school. He played 137 games there, with a .968 fielding percentage and a batting average of .310 in 2010. Outside of Crush, Coach Bruno coaches at Poway High School and attends CSU San Marcos in pursuit of an economics degree. His father, Tom, played 14 seasons in the majors with the California Angels, Minnesota Twins, St. Louis Cardinals, Boston Red Sox and Milwaukee Brewers, and has also served as the Minnesota Twins hitting coach. Coach Bruno helps with the High School Crush teams and is also the varsity outfield coach at Poway High school.

 

621744_10151866420606062_1230884514_o.jp

Coach Nick Carmichael is a Rancho Bernardo High School alum. He lettered in baseball, track and field, and football while attending. Following graduation, Nick continued his education at the University of Redlands where he played football as a tight end. In 2011, he transferred to Palomar College and was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the 17th round. Opting to return for another year at Palomar, he was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 24th round of the 2012 draft and signed. While at Palomar, Nick was on the 2011 and 2012 All-Pacific Coast Conference team with a combined ERA of 2.76. Nick was with the Detroit Tigers from 2012 to 2014 and posted a career ERA of 3.25. 
Nick graduated from CSU San Marcos with Dean’s List and Cum Laude honors and holds a degree in Business Finance.  Along with coaching Crush, Nick has coached baseball at Poway High School since 2015. 

CJ Cecil

3.jfif

Coach CJ played high school ball with Coach Pizzo at Horizon Christian Academy. While there, he had a 2.19 ERA pitching as a senior. Following high school, CJ played baseball at three schools: Oklahoma Baptist University,  Ottawa University, and University of South Carolina Beaufort. CJ also played basketball in high school.

Scott Elitzky

1.jpg

Scott played baseball at Crowder Junior college in 2008-2010. He made a Junior College World Series appearance in 2010 and was voted Pitcher of the Year. He then attended Lander University from 2010-2012, where in 2011 his team made the conference and regional tournament. Following his college career, Scott played professionally in the IBL (Canadian) baseball league, he played in the Pecos League, and in the Liga Del Norte de Coahuila (Mexican) league.  

Scott coached travel ball in Texas from 2013 - 2018 before moving to San Diego with his wife. He is currently a Radiation Therapist at California Protons Cancer Therapy Center. He coaches 12u and 13u Crush teams. 

Caleb Guy

Coach Caleb Guy graduated from Christian Life Academy in 2013, after playing 4 years of baseball and also lettering in basketball and volleyball. He began coaching with the Crush in 2014. He also attended Cal State San Marcos where he played club ball. In his 2018 season, he batted .317. Coach Caleb has coached high school baseball since 2018 at Poway High School, and he has coached various Crush teams since 2015. 

Colten Jackson

10308582_406075422863687_715920344146816

Colten is a Rancho Bernardo High School Alum, where he played centerfield and third base. Colten's career highlights include an errorless season as a starter. Colten is currently attending Mesa college and plans to gain his teaching credential. He aims to teach elementary school and be a high school baseball coach. 

Deron Johnson

deron.jpg

Deron currently is the Poway High School hitting coach. While there, he has coached over 80 All-League performers and 6 Team USA players. He also has over 100 past and current college players, three of which have been All-Conference Players of the Year in the Mountain West Conference, Big West Conference, and Big 10 Conference. Coach Deron also has coached 10 Big League Players, including 3 current players: Austin Wynns, Kevin Newman, and Alex Dickerson. He works with numerous Minor League players in the offseason as well. Prior to coaching, Coach Deron also played 3 years of professional baseball and 4 years at SDSU.

Deron Johnson Jr

SDSU_vs_USF_Games_2_3_Edited_IG__71.jpg

Deron Johnson Jr is the son of Deron Johnson. Deron started at catcher at Poway his sophomore, junior, and senior seasons where he hit .336 with a .408 on-base percentage. He went on to play D1 at San Diego State University for three years, where he had 22 starts and over 100 ABs. Deron is a Crush alum.

JD Lawrence

2.jpg

Coach JD played high school baseball at San Fernando High School in the San Fernando Valley where he was a 3-year varsity catcher and an all-city catcher his senior year. After finishing up his playing career, he began his coaching career at San Diego State University where he was the student manager for the baseball team. JD also received his communications degree there and was teammates with our Coach Deron Johnson Jr.      

Kennan Olsen

10308582_406075422863687_715920344146816

Coach Kennan grew up and played in Ramona. He was a catcher and worked closely with MLB pitchers Cole and Beau Sulser. Outside of baseball, Kennan works as an ABA therapist for children and young adults with developmental issues. He currently and lives with his wife in Valley Center.

Anthony Pizzo

aPizzo.png

Coach Pizzo played four years in high school as a utility player at Horizon Christian Academy. He then played two years at San Diego City College as one of the team's starting pitchers, and then transferred to University of Saint Katherine where he was coached by Dominick Johnson. During his time at St Katherine, he became a key reliever in their bullpen racking up the most appearances each season. During his last season at St. Katherine, his team won the Conference Championship which was also the first season his team was in that conference. Coach Pizzo graduated with an undergraduate degree in business and is currently one semester away from receiving his masters degree in Organizational Leadership. 

Nick Rodieck

nick-r_edited.jpg

Nick attended West Hills HS where the baseball team won the league title in 2003, the first in school history. As a senior, Nick went 7-4 as a pitcher and notched the highest batting average of .450 in the league in 2003. Nick attended San Diego Mesa College where he was Pitcher of the Year, an all-conference honorable mention, and Athlete of the Week in 2006. In his 2006 season, he recorded an 8-4 record while yielding 18 walks in 100 innings pitched, and an ERA of 2.90. He also recorded the most stolen bases in 2006 while at Mesa. Nick went on to play at the University of San Diego in 2007 and 2008. While there, he had a career pitching record of 7-2 in 105 innings with 62 strikeouts. Nick previously coached travel ball with the San Diego Deacons and currently is a varsity baseball coach at Mt. Carmel High School. 

Chad Sixt

10308582_406075422863687_715920344146816

Coach Chad is a Rancho Bernardo High School baseball alum. He played second base and shortstop on the varsity baseball team and was awarded the Bronco award his senior year (.986 fielding and .354 batting.) Chad then attended California Lutheran University, where he played baseball and recorded starts at second base, shortstop, third base, and outfield. He also recorded some innings catching for CLU before graduating with a BS in 1996.  Chad started developing his love for coaching in 2005 as a volunteer with the 4S Ranch Little League Juniors Team.  Chad was asked to coach and instruct local baseball talent with the San Diego Eagles, a non-profit baseball club. Chad was a head and assistant coach for various Eagles teams (10U – 18U) from 2008 to 2014. Eagles players from these teams have gone on to play at the high school, college, and professional levels. Chad has been coaching with the San Diego Crush since 2017 and coaches the 15u - 18u teams. He is also an assistant coach for the Poway High School Varsity Baseball Team. 

Brett Tomko

2.png

Coach Brett joined Crush in 2021 as a 12u coach. Before coaching, he played in the MLB from 1997 through 2011. In this span, he played for the Cincinnati Reds, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners, St. Louis Cardinals, San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, Texas Rangers, and Kansas City Royals. In his time, he accumulated 100 Big League wins and over 100 strikeouts. 

Brady Ware

IMG_9700.jpeg

Brady is a current sophomore pitcher and utility player at the University of St. Katherine. Brady played with Crush from 8th grade through high school and played with the college Crush team this summer. He played under coach Deron Johnson at Poway High School for 4 years. Brady is majoring in Business Management at St. Katherine.