Preuninger takes over boys basketball team at Heritage

Son Drew will be assistant coach for Timberwolves

By Paul Valencia, Columbian high school sports reporter

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Scott Preuninger was a head coach for 19 seasons.

Now that he has experienced a few years without the top job, he is looking forward to his return as a head coach.

Heritage High School announced that Preuninger is the new boys basketball coach.

“I always had my eyes open for jobs in the area,” said Preuninger, who was the head coach at Camas for eight seasons before resigning prior to the 2011-12 campaign. “I kept looking for anything that popped up. The more I looked into the (Heritage) situation, it reminded me of my days in … Umatilla and Dallas, where the program wasn’t very successful and I was able to come in and turn things around.”

Preuninger led Umatilla to an Oregon state championship in 1997 and later led Dallas, Ore., to its first state tournament berth in more than 20 years. He also was a head coach at Lakeridge before arriving at Camas.

After taking time off to watch his son play college basketball and his daughter play high school ball, Preuninger returned to the bench as an assistant coach at Evergreen.

“I enjoyed my time at Evergreen, but I’m just not ready to be an assistant coach,” he said. “I’ve been doing things my way. I’d been a head coach for 19 years.”

Now, it will be at least 20 years.

Heritage boys basketball has struggled for most of its existence. The Timberwolves went 0-20 this past winter.

“It’s a challenge. I’m ready for the challenge,” Preuninger said.

Preuninger, who will remain a teacher at Camas, is hoping his son Drew, a Concordia graduate, will join him on his Heritage staff.

“It was good to take a year off and get some balance in my life,” Preuninger said of leaving Camas. “After a while, I missed it, and I wanted to get back into it — with more passion and enthusiasm. I’m just ready to go. I’ve been looking forward to this day for the last two or three years.”

McGarvie hired as Union athletic director

Gary McGarvie, who recently was named Union’s head football coach, is taking another high-profile job with the Titans.

The school board approved McGarvie to take over as the school’s athletic director, as well.

McGarvie is replacing Cale Piland, who held both posts since Union opened its doors in the fall of 2007.