Valley Vista girls basketball coach, Rachel Matakas was one of five coaches in different sports inducted into the Arizona Coaches Association Hall of Fame on April 23.
Matakas began her journey as math teacher and girls basketball coach at Valley Vista High School in 2006.
She has coached in Arizona for 20 years and her record is 326-106 since starting the Valley Vista program for an 87% winning average. The Monsoon have won five state titles in six seasons 2017, 2018, 2020, 2021, and 2022, as well as seven region championships.
In a tweet after the ceremony Matakas credited the Dysart Unified School District and Valley Vista athletic department for empowering her to build the girls basketball program.
“Thank you for all the support the last several years. I would not be here with your support,” she tweeted April 24.
Her Valley Vista teams reached the state playoffs in 13 out of 15 years. Coach Matakas was named Arizona Coach of the Year in 2018 and 2021 6A Conference Coach of the Year in 2018 and 2020; Region Coach of the Year in 2017, 2019, 2020 and 2021.
West Valley Preps editor Richard Smith named her Coach of the Year in 2016, 2018, 2020 and 2021
Matakas has high expectations of her teams on the court and in the classroom where her teams have earned AIA-All Academic Team Banners by maintaining a 3.5 or higher GPA on several occasions.
She began her coaching career at Peoria High School where she coached freshmen, junior varsity and ultimately the was head coach for five years. Matakas coached a total of nine years at Peoria.
Matakas has kept herself busy in the basketball arena by being part of the Arizona Basketball Coaches Association, and was a leading voice of the girls basketball coaches planning an alternative season for girls had the AIA executive board not reversed course and reinstated the 2021 basketball season.
“I went out and got reps for each conference and region. All those coaches and I were working in tandem. Some schools could practice but could not host games,” Matakas said in a January 2021 interview.
For the last several years she has served on the ABCA executive board and on the AIA SAC basketball committee.
While Matakas is most known for her basketball expertise, she has coached cross-country and track during her coaching career as well.