August 15, 2013

Matias Named Head Women’s Tennis Coach

FULLERTON, Calif. – Dianne Matias has been named head women's tennis coach at Cal State Fullerton, it was announced by Director of Athletics Jim Donovan on Thursday.

Matias replaces the recently retired Bill Reynolds, who served 24 years at the helm of the women's tennis program.

"I was very impressed with Dianne's depth of experience at the Division I level," Donovan said. "She has strong ties to Southern California, and I expect that knowledge to help in our recruiting efforts. She also has thorough experience in the Big West Conference, and I believe that will help steer our program to great success, building on the foundation that Bill Reynolds worked so diligently to establish."

Matias, who is the fifth Fullerton women's tennis head coach since 1984, is remaining in the Big West Conference after serving as an assistant on UC Irvine's staff last season.

"I am extremely honored to be the new head coach at Cal State Fullerton," Matias said. "I would like to thank Director of Athletics Jim Donovan, Associate Athletics Director Julie Bowse, and the selection committee for this tremendous opportunity and for their commitment to women's tennis. It is a great time to be a Titan, and I am excited to help the program reach new heights and build it into a perennial contender in the Big West."

In 2013, the Anteaters notched their first-ever NCAA Tournament victory with a 4-2 win over San Jose State.  The squad finished the year ranked 33rd in the nation, clinched the Big West regular season championship, and also boasted the league player of the year in Kristina Smith.

The Anteaters experienced a 20-match win streak, and UC Irvine's 23-5 record marked the most wins in program history.

The head coaching opportunity will be the second for Matias, who served as Maryland's head coach for the 2011-12 campaign. She spent the previous two seasons as the Terrapins' assistant coach.

During her time at Maryland, Matias brought in the 23rd ranked recruiting class according to TennisRecruiting.net. In addition, Maryland's top singles player reached the round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament, while the doubles pair of Welma Lus and Ana Belzunce also qualified for postseason play.

As an assistant in 2011 at Maryland, the team reached a No. 34 ranking, which was the highest for the program since 1993, while the team advanced to the NCAA Tournament along with one singles player and one doubles team.

Before her three years at Maryland, Matias spent her first year in coaching as an assistant at UC Irvine in 2009.

A 2007 graduate of the University of Southern California, Matias ranked as high as No. 32 nationally in singles and No. 28 in doubles at the collegiate level. She also led the Trojans to a No. 3 ranking nationally at the end of the 2005-2006 season. During her senior year she served as one of the Trojans co-captains.

Before competing at USC, Matias played one season of high school tennis at Carson High School in California after being home-schooled for the three years prior at Futures High in Mission Viejo, Calif. Matias played No. 1 singles and doubles in her senior year and was named to the 2002 Los Angeles Times all-area first team.

At the junior level, Matias enjoyed a prolific career as one of the best players in California and in the nation. Matias was ranked as the No. 1 player nationally in singles at the U16 level in 2000 and 2001. Also in 2000, Matias earned the distinction of the USTA's Southern California Player of the Year.

Born in Balagtas, Bulacan, Philippines, Matias competed as a member of the 2007 Philippine team at the South East Asian Games and the 2008 Philippine FED CUP team.

In addition, Matias previously worked as a private tennis instructor with the City of Irvine from 2008-09 and once again the past year.

Fullerton will return to the court after completing one of its most successful seasons in recent history. The Titans finished the year with 11 wins – the most for the program since 2004.

In addition, Fullerton's four league victories in 2013 represented CSF's highest total since the Big West began round-robin play in 2006. 

"I feel very fortunate to inherit a great group of student-athletes, and I look forward to furthering their recent success on and off the court," Matias said. "I intend to work tirelessly to develop our student-athletes in every way to ensure we represent Cal State Fullerton with pride."