Carr comes back to coach Lawrence

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Tara Carr is the new head women’s basketball coach at Lawrence. Carr’s hiring was announced by athletic director Mike Szkodzinski.

“We are excited to announce the appointment of Tara Carr as the head women’s basketball coach at Lawrence University,” Szkodzinski said. “We believe Tara will be able to draw upon her past collegiate playing and coaching experience to lead our ladies. Her professionalism and attention to detail will certainly allow her to take our program to the next level.”

Carr becomes the ninth coach of the Vikings, whose first season of competition was 1975-76. She's also the fourth in the past five seasons, following interim coach Dennis Nagan, who led Lawrence to an 0-23 record this past season, and Marc Heidorf, who was 3-43 over the two previous seasons.

“I’m truly excited to be named the new head women’s basketball coach at Lawrence University,” said Carr, a native of Hoosick Falls, N.Y. “I feel honored to be a part of the Lawrence athletic department. I look forward to working with the department’s administration, Mike Szkodzinski and Kim Tatro, along with support from provost David Burrows.”

Carr brings a history of playing and coaching experience to the job at Lawrence.

A three-sport standout in basketball, softball and field hockey at Hoosick Falls Central High School, Carr earned all-conference honors in both basketball and field hockey and her softball squad won a New York state championship. Carr starred Oneonta State in both field hockey and basketball and was a basketball standout at the University at Albany.

Carr, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Bowling Green, started her basketball coaching career at Ohio Northern. She then served as the assistant basketball coach at Saginaw Valley State. She coached with the Cardinals from 2001-04 and helped turn that program around.

Carr, who has a masters of business administration from Saginaw Valley State, comes to Lawrence after working outside of coaching in recent years. She has served as the campus director and adjunct instructor in business management and human resource management at the Beloit campus of Concordia (Wis.) since April 2007.

“My goal is to be a part of the Lawrence family for a long time,” said Carr, who relishes the opportunity to guide Lawrence’s student-athletes. “I look forward to working with the returning players. Lawrence provides student-athletes with an excellent education in a competitive environment. The impressive academic reputation, globally diverse student body and Appleton community complete the Lawrence experience.”

Lawrence has enjoyed a history of success, including three conference championships and a Division III NCAA Tournament appearance, in its 35 seasons of women’s basketball. The Vikings have posted 23 seasons of .500 or better, but Lawrence has struggled in recent campaigns.

“It is a personal goal of mine and a goal of our department to revitalize Lawrence women’s basketball,” Szkodzinski said. “There has been tremendous success in the not-so-distant past, and we will continue to work to regain our status as an elite program within the Midwest Conference.”

Lawrence returns nine players from this past season’s team and opens nonconference play in November.