A couple of months ago, Kira (Miller) Matthews was completing her requirements for a bachelor’s degree in digital media and design in Dakota Wesleyan University, that is situated in Mitchell, South Dakota.
Matthews’ life was a whirlwind ever since. That’s since she’s moved back to Preston and is gearing up for the upcoming prep soccer year. The former four-sport high school athlete was hired as her alma mater’s head boys soccer coach.
“I’m excited because it’s a new chapter, I’m starting off fresh, moving home,” Matthews said. “I mean, I know people here, but all the boys, it’s a different generation than my generation was, so getting to know all of them and just being back in town, it’s exciting. I look forward to coaching them.”
The daughter of Brad and Paula Miller will replace Robert Bowles, who resigned after five seasons at the helm.
“(This summer’s) been crazy just because I kind of picked things up pretty quick because I wanted to get to know the boys pretty quick and how they were before we hit the season,” Matthews said. “So basically the whole last month I’ve been coaching and then trying to move, and then coaching and then moving. But it’s been good.”
Matthews didn’t waste any time getting to know her players as Preston attended a camp at Snow College at the conclusion of June. Matthews was able to compete in an exhibition match — coaches vs. All-Stars — at the camp, which was a valuable experience because it helped her gain the trust of her players and “show them that I know what I’m doing, and that I can play the sport, too.”
Matthews is the first woman in recent memory — maybe ever — to be selected as the head coach of one of Cache Valley’s varsity high school boys soccer programs. Being a first-time head coach will surely come with some challenges, but Matthews asserted there are no extra nerves because she’s coaching boys rather than girls.