Year in Review 2011: Preller hangs it up
After 32 years of coaching, longtime Woodbury girls basketball coach and Woodbury High School teacher Dave Preller retired in 2011.
"It's time," Preller said at the time. "I've been fortunate and owe a lot to District 833, the Woodbury community and my family. There is absolutely no way I could have enjoyed this career without an incredible wife and family."
Preller was head girls basketball at Woodbury for 24 years, after beginning as Park girls head basketball coach for his first two years. Prior to leading the Park girls, Preller was an assistant at Woodbury for six years.
In February, Preller, who compiled a 533-182 career coaching record, announced he would be retiring at the end of the 2010-11 school year.
His legacy included one state championship in 2003, a runner-up finish in 1998, a third-place finish in 2004 and a fourth-place finish in 2002, along with 16 conference championships and 10 section championships.
In his final season, Preller was named the Minnesota Coaches Association girls basketball State Coach of the Year in Class AAAA -- the state's highest class. It was the second time Preller was named State Coach of the Year in his 32-year career.
Preller, who was also named Section 4AAAA Coach of the Year in his final season, also received the State Class AAAA Coach of the Year award in 2001-02. It was Preller's eighth Section Coach of the Year honor.
In addition to his State Coach of the Year and Section Coach of the Year honors, Preller was elected to the Minnesota Girls Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002.
In Preller's final season, Woodbury finished 20-8 overall, finished second in the Suburban East Conference with a 14-3 record and reached its fourth-straight Section 4AAAA championship game.
Preller taught for 34 years in District 833, 32 years of those years at Woodbury High School in the Business Education Department. He was also Department Chairman for six years. His family includes wife Marcia and daughters Anne and Liz.
Woodbury hired Lionel Jones as Preller's successor. Jones, who had a career coaching record of 131-23 overall, was previously head coach at Menomonie High School in Menomonie, Wis., where he led the girls team to their first Big Rivers Conference title in school history, and was named Big Rivers coach of the year in 2010, while his team finished with the best regular season record (21-1) and the highest Associated Press poll finish (No. 3) in school history.