Mattinson retires after 19 years at Wyoming, last three as head coach
LARAMIE -- Three seasons.
Forty-eight wins. A Mountain West tournament title. An NCAA Tournament appearance. A sweet 16 run in the WNIT.
That's just a glimpse of Gerald Mattinson's brief head coaching resume at Wyoming.
That's how it will always read, too.
Less than 24 hours after his Cowgirls were knocked off by UCLA 82-81 in triple overtime, ending their three-game WNIT run, Mattinson announced he will retire after spending the previous 19 years on the sidelines in Laramie.
Minutes later, the university had already named his replacement. Longtime assistant, Heather Ezell, will now take the reins of the program.
"Coach G," a Rock Springs native, served as an assistant under Joe Legerski for 16 seasons before being named the seventh head coach in Wyoming history in May of 2019. Together, those two lead the Cowgirls to unthinkable heights, including a WNIT championship in 2007 and a berth in March Madness the following year. Both were firsts in UW history.
“I want to thank (UW Athletics Director) Tom Burman for the opportunity to lead the Wyoming Cowgirl basketball program for the past three seasons,” Mattinson said Friday afternoon in a school release. “I also want to take the time and thank Joe Legerski, all my staff, the student-athletes that have been a part of this program, the University of Wyoming and especially the fans for their amazing support during my time at UW. It’s been a remarkable 19 years here.
"... It’s time for the next chapter in me and my family’s life and I look forward to retirement. Thank you to everyone that has made coaching in this state, being a part of this program and this university a truly special place.”
Mattinson, 63, coached 21 players to All-Mountain West honors during his near two-decade tenure in Laramie. That included five All-Americans and two conference Players of the Year, Aubrey Vandiver (2010-11) and Liv Roberts (2017-18).
In 16 of his 19 seasons, Wyoming reached the postseason 12 times and claimed 16 winning seasons, including the latest 17-13 mark and trip to the third round of the WNIT.
Mattinson's career also included stints at Weber State (1981-82), Rock Springs High School (1982-87) and Western Wyoming Community College (1987-99).
“I want to thank coach Mattinson for his dedication to the Cowgirl basketball program for the better part of two decades as an assistant and head coach,” Burman said Friday afternoon. “In his three seasons as head coach of the Cowgirls, he took this program to new heights with the first Mountain West Tournament title in program history and our second-ever NCAA Tournament appearance last season.
"I wish him the best of luck in his retirement and look forward to seeing him in the future as a Wyoming fan.”
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