Mark MacGowan has stepped down after 19 years leading Paradise Valley’s boys basketball program.
MacGowan, who coached the Trojans to a state championship in 2013, played for Bill Farrell at Paradise Valley in the 1980s. After getting his college degree, he returned to his alma mater and assisted Farrell for eight years before taking over the program in 1998.
He let his players know Tuesday that he won’t be back.
“Just family reasons,” MacGowan said. “My son is a sophomore. He’s going to be graduating before you know it.
“I just need a break. It’s been a wonderful journey, kind of bittersweet.”
MacGowan was 366-187 in his 19 years as head coach. As an assistant under Farrell, PV won state titles in 1995 and ’97 and was state runner-up in 1994.
MacGowan took Paradise Valley to the state final 2007, losing to Todd Fazio’s Scottsdale Desert Mountain team. Fazio stepped down at Mesa Red Mountain after this season, pursuing training grassroots players.
Paradise Valley had state semifinal appearance under MacGowan in 2006, 2008 and 2016.
MacGowan called Athletic Director Rick McCutcheon the best administrator to work for.
McCutcheon said MacGowan will be missed.
“Mark has been a rock in the Northeast Valley community hosting summer basketball camps for our youth and summer leagues for high school teams from all over the Valley,” McCutcheon said in an email. “Mark is known as a great teacher of basketball skills, fundamentals and strategies but more importantly a coach who has always stressed the importance of academics, leadership and the pillars of character, while mentoring so many young students and athletes.
“Mark has earned the well-deserved respect of administrators, teachers, students, players, this entire community and certainly his Arizona coaching peers. Paradise Valley High School has been extremely fortunate to have a coach of this caliber and character.”
MacGowan said he might resurface in a few years as an assistant coach for a high school program.
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