Spartan Spotlight: Coach Nicole
Updated: Feb 11
By: Angelica Buncio '22
Varsity basketball coach Nicole Dinas has been at ICA for a long time now. She started off as the assistant softball coach (2003-2005), coached JV basketball the year after, and then went on to be the varsity basketball coach (2006-present). Coach Nicole became a coach at ICA because of Coach Sideco, and a little fun fact is that they were the only two women in San Francisco in the late '90s to referee high school basketball. From there, Coach Sideco asked her to come aboard, and the rest is history.
Coach Nicole said her favorite part about being a coach is, "building a successful program from beginning to end, creating continuity over the years that is consistent, and developing character in a student-athlete." When asked her most memorable moment being a coach at ICA is, she said, "I have lots of good memories, that's why I keep coming back." She adds that she could be having a bad day, but as soon as she walks into the gym, her team has the ability to make her happy.
In addition to coaching, Coach Nicole was a student-athlete herself back in high school. She said, "Looking back as an adult, my favorite experience in high school wasn't just one thing. We won [the city championship] in San Diego, won league, didn't even have an indoor gym... But my biggest takeaway is that I realized that I was a part of something bigger than me. Because my team was so competitive, we always had one goal in mind: to be selfless and to compete, and looking back, that's exactly what we did. So my overall great experience was contributing and giving back to my teammates, who I still consider my friends to this day." She lastly added, "As a coach, my most memorable moment is all about carrying what I learned from my high-school experience, and giving it to my team everyday, using it to develop them as a program."
Coach Nicole in her first season coaching JV basketball.
Last year Coach Nicole won the Positive Coaching Alliance's Double-Goal Coach Award, an award given to youth or high school sports coaches whose goal is not only to win on the court, but also to teach their athletes important life lessons through sports. It is evident that throughout all her years as a coach, Coach Nicole has made a great impact on many of our Spartan Sisters. May we wish her and our winter sports teams success and the best of luck as they begin their new season!