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Women's Basketball Coaches

Chris Carlson

Chris Carlson

Head Coach
Phone: (208) 769-3347
Office: GYM-129

Chris Carlson enters his 16th season as head coach of the North Idaho College women’s basketball team while averaging 22 wins per season. In 2011, he led the Lady Cardinals to their first-ever national championship, where he was named National Tournament Coach of the Year. This was the NIC women’s third straight top 10 finish and their 4th trip in 5 years to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) national championships in Salina, Kansas. Carlson’s Lady Cardinals captured the Scenic West Athletic Conference (SWAC) tournament championship in 2009, 2010, and 2011. In addition, the Cardinals have won SWAC regular season championships in 2006, 2012, and 2013.

In 2009, 2010, and 2011 Carlson was named NJCAA Association District M Coach of the Year. In 2009 and 2011, he was named the North Idaho Regional Coach of the Year for all college levels. He was also named SWAC Coach of the Year in 2006 and 2012 and has posted a 318-129 record over the last 14 years. In addition, the Cardinals have earned Academic All-American team status 12 out of the last 14 seasons. In his 14 years as a head coach at NIC, Carlson has placed 59 of his players into four-year programs, including 18 Division I scholarships.

Prior to coming to NIC, Carlson was an assistant coach for three years (2001-2004) at Eastern Washington University, where he helped guide the women’s team to its best record, at that time, since 1988.

After graduating in 1984 from Northeast Missouri State University, where he earned All-Conference honors for his NCAA Division II national qualifying team, Carlson went on to play professional basketball in New Zealand. Carlson began his college coaching career at Eastern Oregon University in 1988 as an assistant coach, working with the men’s and women’s programs. From 1992 to 2000, he was the head women’s coach at Big Bend Community College in Moses Lake, Washington, and was named Eastern Region Coach of the Year in 1999 for the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges. Carlson was an assistant women’s coach at the University of Idaho from 2000 to 2001 before accepting the assistant coaching job at Eastern Washington University. Since returning to the NWAC in 2016, Carlson has led NIC to the NWAC Championship tournament in 2018 and 2019.

Carlson and his assistant coach, Carey Carlson, coached the Spokane Stars club girls basketball team, which placed eighth in the country in 1998. He and Carey also started the North Idaho Elite club girls basketball program in North Idaho, which has won and placed high in the elite division of several prestigious national tournaments.

Carlson lives in Post Falls with his wife Carey and their three children, 21-year-old Christina, 20-year-old James, and 11-year-old Jordan.

Korina Baker

Korina Baker

Assistant Coach
Phone: (208) 929-4035
Office: GYM-127

Korina Baker, the former Freeman (WA) High School standout, returns to Coeur d'Alene to join the Cardinal staff as an assistant coach. Baker was the starting point guard on the NIC National Championship women's basketball team that swept through the 2011 NJCAA national tournament by an average victory margin of 20 points. Baker was a two year starter for the Cardinals, earning NJCAA Region 18 1st Team honors as a sophomore. Following graduation from NIC, Baker transferred to NCAA Division I Southern Methodist University for the 2012-14 seasons. As a junior, Baker helped the Mustangs win the title in Conference USA, and her team advanced to the Women's National Invitational Tournament. In Baker's senior season SMU switched conferences to the prestigious American Athletic Conference, competing with traditional national powers UConn, Cincinnati, Temple, Houston, and Wichita State, amongst others. Baker earned her Bachelor's degree in Sociology from SMU and returned to the Spokane area after graduation. She has a two year old son, Aiden.

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