Valley Vista earns respect, repeats as 6A Champions

Posted: Updated:
The Valley Vista girls' basketball team earned respect by winning another championship. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Valley Vista girls' basketball team earned respect by winning another championship. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The team won back-to-back titles. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The team won back-to-back titles. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Some doubted the team, claiming last year's title was a fluke. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Some doubted the team, claiming last year's title was a fluke. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The Monsoon finally got the long overdue respect they deserve. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Monsoon finally got the long overdue respect they deserve. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

In 2017, the Valley Vista girls' basketball team won the state title and had to overcome so much adversity in the process. They had injuries, homeless kids, displaced players and coach Rachel Matakas' brother was suffering from cancer.

Through it all, the ladies went on to win the state title. Many high school basketball fans were surprised, some even considered it a fluke the Monsoon pulled off the championship.

That was motivation for coach Matakas' team. Never ranked No. 1, Valley Vista outworked its competition. It led to a 9-1 section record and finishing 25-6 overall defeating Xavier in the 6A Finals to capture back-to-back titles.

"It's amazing to do it again and do it with my senior class is very special," said senior guard Taylor Chavez.

"It feels amazing. Like, we knew we had all the pieces throughout the whole season. It was just a matter of us putting it all together and we did that," said senior guard Rysha Banner.

"Oh, it’s a great tribute to the school, the program and it’s just an honor," said Matakas.

[MORE: Arizona sports stories]

The Monsoon finally got the long overdue respect they deserve.

"People have to respect us. Like I said people last year didn't respect us. They thought it was a fluke. So we wanted to avenge ourselves so we worked hard every day to play the best," Matakas said.

"I think we earned it. We're the best 6A program for repeating and I know coach Matakas will keep Valley being a state contending team," said Chavez

"Everyone always talks about eastside schools and now it's two years in a row," said Banner.

Senior Guards Taylor Chavez and Rysha Banner, who've done everything for the program, go out in style combining for 39 points, 7 assists and 14 rebounds.

"It's always special doing it with Rysha because she is one of my best friends and we talked about it all season. No matter what it takes, we're going to be the leaders on this team and we got it done," said Chavez.

"We knew like, we were not losing this game, so we all got together and basically persevered throughout," said Banner.

State title memories and a bond that will last for lifetimes. Valley Vista, a two-time state champion, proudly representing the westside.

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.