Isayra Diaz | Assistant Coach
Isayra Diaz is entering her third year as an assistant coach at Grambling State University. Coach Diaz job duties are skill development with the guards, film exchange, scouting, recruiting and academics. Since her arrival in Grambling in 2015, Diaz’s roles have paid dividends in the Lady Tigers’ success. In the 2016-2017 season the Lady Tigers’ won a share of the regular season SWAC Championship for the first time since 2000 with a record of 14-4 in conference play and earned the #1 seed in the SWAC Tournament. Despite falling to Texas Southern in the SWAC Championship Game, Grambling made its first postseason appearance since 2000 earning a bid to the Women’s National Invitational Tournament (WNIT). In the first round of the tournament Grambling became the first SWAC team to win a postseason game, defeating SEC opponent Ole Miss 78-75. The Lady Tigers would fall in the second round of the WNIT to Tulane University. For the 2015-2016 season the Lady Tigers finished with a 13-5 conference record and made an appearance in the SWAC tournament semifinals.
As a former guard herself, Diaz, along with Coach David Pierre, has been instrumental in the overall development of guards Shakyla Hill and Jazmin Boyd since their arrival on campus. For the 2016-2017 season Hill earned 1st team All-SWAC and BOXTOROW 1st Team All-American honors, averaging 15.0 points per game along with an average of 7.8 rebounds per game. Hill also shot a conference best 48.2% from the field and averaged a conference best 4.2 assists per game and 3.0 steals per game. Boyd was selected as a 2nd Team All-SWAC pick for the 2016-2017 season, averaging 11.8 points per game and was tied for 3rd in the conference in three-pointers made (50). For the 2015-2016 season Shakyla was a BOXTOROW 2nd Team All-American and All-SWAC selection and Jazmin was selected as the SWAC Freshman of the Year.
Isayra Diaz attended the highly ranked Mohawk Valley Community College ending on a 55-6 record. As a team captain, She led MVCC to a 55-6 overall record, two undefeated conference championships, and an NJCAA Region 3 Championship her sophomore season. Isayra Diaz ranks 4th all-time in scoring with 916 points in her two seasons and 2nd for three-pointers made in a season with 83. During each of her two seasons, Isayra Diaz ranked in the top 3 among her teammates in points, rebounds, steals, assists, and blocks.
After two successful years at Mohawk Valley Community College she transferred to Shaw University. Her junior year she won the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association championship, Regional Championship and won the 2012 Division II National Championship. Shaw University made history for being the only HBCU and unranked team to win a National Championship. She finished off her senior year winning the CIAA Championship. During her tenure of playing basketball she was honored the Conference Player of the Year, Region Player of the Year, NJCAA Region 3 Tournament MVP, and NJCAA First Team All-American.
Isayra Diaz played two years of semi-pro with Winston Salem Lady Warcats, then transitioned into becoming a women’s basketball coach.
A native of Manhattan, New York, Diaz earned a Bachelor’s Degree 2014 in Exercise Science from Shaw University.
David Pierre | Assistant Coach
David Pierre is in his fourth season with the Lady Tigers women’s basketball program and as lead assistant coach. Pierre works with all aspects of the program including, perimeter player development, recruiting, academic support and opponent scouting. He also serves as the program’s recruiting coordinator. During his time at Grambling State, Pierre has helped the Lady Tigers amass a 34-20 mark in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.
In the 2016-2017 season the Lady Tigers won a share of the regular season SWAC Championship for the first time since 2000 with a record of 14-4 in conference play and earned the #1 seed in the SWAC Tournament. Grambling made its first postseason appearance since 2000 earning a bid to the Women’s National Invitational Tournament (WNIT) despite falling four points short of a SWAC championship title in the SWAC Tournament. In the first round of the WNIT, Grambling became the first SWAC team to ever win a postseason game, defeating SEC opponent Ole Miss 78-75. The Lady Tigers would fall in the second round to Tulane University.
Pierre has helped this program jump to major heights from season one (7-11) conference record and (10-20) overall record to year two stint making a remarkable jump to (13-5) conference record and (17-14) overall record with a fourth place finish and advanced to the semi-final game in the SWAC tournament. In his first season at Grambling, Pierre’s responsibilities include recruiting, player development, on-floor coaching, breaking down film, scouting opponents and working with the guards and post players.
He was instrumental in securing a solid 2015-2016 recruiting class when he signed guards Shakyla Hill and Jazmin Boyd, which resulted in the two freshmen receiving All-Conference honors for consecutive seasons. For the 2015-2016 season Shakyla was a BOXTOROW 2nd Team All-American and All-SWAC selection and Jazmin was selected as the SWAC Freshman of the Year. For the 2016-2017 season Hill earned 1st team All-SWAC and BOXTOROW 1st Team All-American honors, averaging 15.0 points per game along with an average of 7.8 rebounds per game. Hill also shot a conference best 48.2% from the field and averaged a conference best 4.2 assists per game and 3.0 steals per game. Boyd was selected as a 2ndTeam All-SWAC pick for the 2016-2017 season, averaging 11.8 points per game and was tied for 3rd in the conference in three-pointers made (50).
Pierre is no stranger to the lady tiger program working as a graduate assistant and volunteer coach from 2006-2008 seasons under former head Coach David “Rusty” Ponton. He assisted with practice planning, office organization and post-player development. He also helped coordinate the planning and execution of camps, and organizing team community outreach activities.
Prior to returning to the Lady Tigers coaching staff in 2014, Pierre spent five years as an Intramural Sports Coordinator and coach of several men’s and women’s club teams where he won three women’s and two men’s basketball intramural championships. He also worked with several high schools on player development and instructional basketball fundamental training.
Pierre earned his undergraduate degree in Mass Communication from Grambling State, as well as his Master Degree in Sports Administration. He is married to Latoya Pierre. The couple has one son, Kahlil Jackson, and one daughter, Haley Pierre.
Eumarcus Hicks | Director of Operations
EuMarcus Hicks is in his first season with the Lady Tigers basketball program, serving as the director of basketball operations. Hicks plays an intricate role within the program and helps with player development, monitoring academic progress and player support. He also assists in some day-to-day operations to ensure effective completion of projects, implements community service projects and help to maintain the effectiveness of team equipment.
Hicks is no stranger to the Lady Tiger program. He worked as a graduate assistant/film exchange coach from 2001-2003 under former head Coach David “Rusty” Ponton. He assisted in practice planning, film exchange and player development. He also helped coordinate the planning and implementation of the "Rusty" Ponton Basketball Camp, where he was also a camp facilitator.
Prior to his return to the Lady Tigers basketball program, Hicks spent the last four years as high coach where he was directly responsible for player development, scouting and monitoring academic progress.
Hicks earned his undergraduate degree in kinesiology with a minor in physical education from Grambling State, as well as his master’s degree in sports administration. He is married to LaWanna M. Hicks and they have two sons, Seth Matthew Hicks, and Ian Alexander Hicks.