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Meet our Team

Get to know the dedicated coaches and passionate staff behind Salt Lakers. We come from all different backgrounds, and we are united in sharing our passion for coaching female athletes. We are an all-female staff, that strives to teach the principles of discipline, leadership, and respect. 

Erica Martinez

President of Club Operations

Other Duties: Head Coach/Skill Development (Guard Focused)

Contact: (801) 649-9222,

Erica joined the Salt Lakers coaching staff in 2015 & is an alumni of Salt Lakers (2004-2010). In 2020, Erica collaborated with Michon Johnson (Founder of Salt Lakers) to create the female youth program and expand upon his mission and values of the Salt Lakers Girls Basketball Club. Erica has an extensive basketball background, highlighting when she played at Judge Memorial Catholic High School, where she has held the 3-point record for a single season (250) since 2010. She continued her basketball career at Snow College & Boise State University on full-ride scholarships. Erica obtained mainly accolades, excelled in her 3-point specialty, and strived to be the best player in her position throughout her basketball career. Through the game of basketball, Erica was able to build long lasting relationships, gain extensive knowledge of the game, and create her own passion for sharing her experiences with female youth of all ages. Erica’s passion for coaching comes from her own experiences and memories with some of her favorite coaches, and learning from them to be the best coach that she can for female athletes. She wants to create a positive experience for all players, build trusting relationships among players, coaches, and parents, and help guide female youth towards a positive future, whether that be in the game of basketball or in the game of life.


Lani Rodrigues 

Director of Basketball Operations & Player Development

Other Duties: Head Coach/Skill Development (Guard Focused) 


Former Utes standout, Lani Rodrigues is in her 4th year with the Salt Lakers. Lani grew up in Hawaii where she attended Roosevelt High School before transferring to Kalani High School as a senior, ranked No. 2 in the state of Hawaii, was two-time OIA East Division Player of the Year. She led both Kalani (2008) and Roosevelt (2006 and 2007) to state titles, receiving first-team all-state & named Roosevelt HS MVP in 2006, 2007. Lani played on Mayor Mufi Hanneman's All-Star "Team Aloha" that was the Nike Storm Tournament champions & involved with the Kalakaua Foundation Basketball Clinic.

After high school, she received a full basketball scholarship to the University of Utah. Her freshman year, she played in 34 games, starting three. She helped lead her team to the Mountain West Tournament championship game losing an overtime heartbreaker to San Diego State University & later competing in the WNIT tournament. After college she spent the 2013-14 playing Professional Basketball in Germany for the Wolfenbüttel Wolfpack. Lani's enthusiasm for the game shines through the hard work & commitment she has for the development of young ladies on & off the court. She strongly believes that the process is just as important as the results.

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Deanna Tupai

Co-Director of Basketball Operations & Player Development

Other Duties: Head Coach/Skill Development (Post Focused) 


Deanna Tupai joined the Salt Lakers coaching staff in 2022 and has been a vital asset to our team of coaches. With her undeniable passion for the game of basketball and her willingness to put our players in the best positions to be successful, we can’t say enough about how much she means to our program.

Deanna brings the expectations of toughness, resiliency, and accountability to our players. With her tough love and heightened spirit, she pushes our players to the next level and shows them that they are capable of everything, if they work hard and have the right mindset. Her passion for coaching is priceless and we’re grateful to have Deanna on our coaching staff and a huge part of our Salt Lakers Family.

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Shay Thompson

Team Manager 

Other Duties: Club operations & fundraising coordinator


Shay Thompson joined Salt Lakers in 2022 as our Team Manager. She has been very important to the success and growth of our entire program. She started out as the “team mom”, in that she would do anything and everything for our players during practices, games, etc. Shay has a long background in working with at-risk youth and youth in general, which allows her to build positive relationships with our players, so they feel comfortable going to her for all their needs. Being the Team Manager is not all Shay does for Salt Lakers. Shay goes above and beyond to help with everything behind the scenes, in running our program, scheduling, fundraising, and any task that we ask of her to help with.

Our players love having Shay apart of our Salt Lakers family and enjoy her presence. Us coaches are very grateful that she decided to join our staff, because she has shown compassion and empathy for our players in a way that allows us to be better coaches.

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