It has been my pleasure to work with many great kids over the past fifteen years in helping them improve their fundamentals and respective skill sets, focus their determination and competitive spirit, reach their potential as a player as they strive towards the highest level possible, set, reach and exceed their individual and team goals and hopefully contribute to the learning of a few life lessons as well. Thanks to all of these wonderful young adults for sharing their time with me and helping to make me better as a coach, trainer, director, friend and father.


I first met Denn when I was in 8th grade. At that point in time I had no idea how big of an influence he would have on my basketball career and also on me as a person. He has an incredible amount of enthusiasm for the game of basketball and he truly cares for the athletes he coaches. In high school he was always the first one to greet me after a game, giving me positive feedback on how I played and constructive criticism for what I needed to work on for our next competition. From letting me into the gym to shoot, to running sprints with me to help me train in the off season, Denn was always willing to do whatever would help prepare me the best. He will do anything to help athletes get to where they want to go. I truly respect Denn for all of the time he has put into helping his players get better.

---Katie Grad, Class of 2008 Auburn Riverside, Katie is known to be one of the hardest working players to ever come out of the AR program, helping her high school teams to a 6th Place finish at State in 2006 and Back-to-Back State Championships in 2007 and 2008 and was also recognized as the Washington State High School Player of the Year, Grad attended and graduated from Washington State University and played Pac-12 basketball for Coach June Daugherty and the Cougars. 


Denn has been impacting my basketball career since I was in the 7th grade.  I have never met anyone more dedicated to coaching and learning the game of basketball. He has the ability to instill ultra competitive mindsets into athletes and challenge them to get to that next level year after year. I have never been more impressed with a coach willing to be so dedicated to athletes who are willing to work hard and lay it all on the line. He has extensive experience in teaching speed footwork training through agility and getting competitors bigger and stronger in the weight room. Ultimately, Denn is a mentor, a leader, and a motivator to get athletes to start believing in working hard and developing new skills through constant repetition beginning with trial and error. I am happy to have such a good relationship with someone so knowledgeable of the sport and of the game of life. His understanding goes far beyond typical basketball education, but pushes urgency in becoming a strong willed athlete and compelling devoted players to find their own eye of the tiger.

---Mercedes Wetmore, Auburn Riverside Class of 2010, Mercedes was a key part of four straight top level Washinton state high school teams at AR, winning State Championships in 2007, 2008 and 2010 and placing 4th in 2009, Wetmore was also recognized for several individual awards including Gatorade State Player of the Year. Coach Kevin McGuff, then Coach Mike Neighbors and the NCAA Division I University of Washington Huskies were happy to have Mercedes as part of their team as she attended and graduated from the UW, setting a school record playing in 127 career games. 

Denn is someone who will put in the time with any player. He has an immense amount of passion for the game of basketball and is constantly a student of the game. He will stick his neck on the line for the players who want to put in the time and effort to get better at any level. He is more than willing to make the calls and use his resources to get a player to the next level. Having played under him since I was in the Riverside Youth Program, I have had the opportunity to understand Denn's dedication to the players that he works with. He wants to see players reach their goals whether they want to continue onto college or simply play the game of basketball and improve in the process. He is a gym rat and will join any player in the gym so they may put in the time needed to thrive. He will push players to their limits so they can have the opportunity to grow as players and people. He will help players take their game to the next level.

---Kara Jenkins, Auburn Riverside Class of 2010, Kara was a warrior on the court, doing whatever her team needed to get the win and was well known to be the "glue" of the Riverside teams that won State Championships in 2007, 2008 and 2010 and placed 4th in 2009. Kara recently completed her playing career at Division I Idaho State University and played basketball for Coach Seton Sobolewski's Bengals.

Denn has always gone the extra mile. Anyone who asked for his help was never let down. Opening up the gym when no one else would, running WITH a kid, contacting coaches for them. He will do everything he can to help out a truly committed player. No bias, he does the same for any other player that he does with me. I would never have made it to the college athletic scene if it wasn't for him and the countless hours of work he put in with me. As much as I didn't want to admit it, he always knew what he was talking about. When I needed advice, he had the coaches perspective. I would definitely recommend that any player who is serious about getting to the college level seek out Denn's expertise.

---Jelisa Pretz, Graduated Auburn Riverside High School in 2010 with the program having won WA State Championships in 2007, 2008 and 2010 and placing 4th at State in 2009. Jelisa attended Warner Pacific College and played basketball for Coach Matt Gregg and the Division II Knights.

Denn has been my coach since I was in 5th grade. He has put in more time than any other coach that I know, and has a genuine love for the game of basketball. Denn is one of the most committed people I know. He has put in countless hours of gym time with players who ask for his assistance. Personally, Denn has been a mentor to me, helping me with the recruiting process and factoring out different schools. I never once asked Denn to do this, it is just the type of person he is, and I am very thankful for his advice and I would honestly be lost through this process if it were not for him. He has great basketball advice and knowledge and I am so lucky to have had his guidance and training since 5th grade. After all the long talks and words of wisdom, I truly feel that I am a better player today because of him. If you are truly dedicated to the game of basketball, Denn will do everything in his power to get you to where you want to be.

---Makenna Clark, Auburn Riverside Class of 2011, Makenna helped AR to a State Championship in 2010 and was a key to the success of the Ravens in 2010-2011. Makenna attended college at Seattle University and played D1 basketball for Coach B and the Redhawks.

I began working with Denn as my coach in the 6th grade.  Since that time Denn has had an immeasurable impact on me as an athlete. He has always been honest with me when it came to my skill level, informing me of what I needed to work harder on in order to improve.  He is simply one of the best youth basketball coaches you will find.  I feel fortunate to have had him as a coach and I give him heartfelt thanks for the investment he made in my athletic career.  Denn truly cares about the development of the players that he's working with.  He is loyal, dedicated, hard working and really puts his heart into coaching and teaching players.  I sincerely recommend Denn as a coach to any aspiring players.

--Jalea Crump, Auburn Riverside Class of 2012, Jalea contributed for the AR team that went undefeated and won the Washington state 4A title in 2010 and was a key component to their success during the 2011-2012 season. She moved on to play college basketball at Adams State College in Colorado as a part of the Grizzlies program and then on to attend Washington State University. 


Denn Pretz became my coach in the 6th grade when I had moved to Auburn. He has had one of the biggest impacts on who I am today as a basketball player. Once I reached the high school level, his helping me become a better player did not stop. I knew I could always reach out to Denn whenever I felt like I wanted to improve my game even if it was just to open up the gym to get a few extra shots in. Being in his program all three years until I went on to high school has taught me a lot. You will not find any other better youth basketball coach out there that has the heart and passion like Denn has for kids' basketball futures. I truly have to thank him for all he has done for me. Not only did he teach me the game of basketball but there were also some life lessons taught as well. I have matured a lot as an athlete because of Denn and all that he has done. So if you're going to be dedicated and willing to work your butt off to make it to the next level, I recommend Denn Pretz as a coach. He will make sure you get to where you want to be.

---Karina Gee, Auburn Riverside Class of 2012, Karina was a key contributor to the success of the ARHS program her junior and senior seasons, working hard in the offseason to improve her all around game from one year to the next. She first went to Centralia College to continue her education as well as playing basketball for the Trailblazers and then continued her education and also her basketball career at Evergreen State College. She currently serves as the varsity assistant coach for the Auburn Riverside High School girls' basketball program.


Denn Pretz is the best of the best! If you are serious about the game of basketball and want to reach your full potential then you need to be coached by Denn. He pushes you to get your best at all times. Both in practices and in games, he never takes a possession off and expects you to do the same. He truly wants the best for each of his players and will do all he can for them. I have a lot of respect for Denn because he has helped me grow, not only as a player, but as a person. From opening up gyms, training or even pregame talks, he's always there for you. As long as you're willing to put in the hard work, Denn will be right by your side, pushing you to be your best.

---Kendall Foster, Auburn Riverside Class of 2013, Kendall was a key to AR's success in 2010-2011 and 2011-2012, but a knee injury and surgery sidelined her just as she was showing potential as a legitimate D1 prospect going into her senior year of high school. Having rested and rehabilitated, she then looked to return to the court as part of the program at St. Martin's University for the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 season but has since moved on to completing her college education at St. Martin's University and also serves as a coach in the NW All-Stars club team program.

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