Nikolina Pender is in her second season on the Duquesne Women's Basketball staff as a graduate assistant. Pender returned to her alma mater during the 2004-05 season where she was a four-year letterwinner and three year starter with the Dukes from 2000 to 2003.
She graduated in 2003 with a degree in technology marketing. The Sibenik, Croatia native averaged 3.5 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.4 assists as senior leading the Dukes to a 15-14 record. She racked up 7.3 ppg and 4.5 boards as a junior and stands tied for ninth in the Duquesne records books with fellow assistant coach Trixie Wolf swatting 44 blocks. Pender was a member of the Croatian National team and has competed for her country at the European Championships.
She has coached at numerous college camps, including the Dan Durkin Basketball Camp for girls, Georgetown and Connecticut.
Before coming to Duquesne, Pender coached the Ellis High School (Pittsburgh) summer league team and taught a mini-basketball course.
Her younger sister, Matea, is following in her footsteps as she is a member of the UMBC women's basketball team.
The 23-year old Pender, who speaks Croatian, English, German and Italian, and is currently pursuing a degree her MBA at Duquesne.