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Cuba City coach Jerry Petitgoue to retire after 2022-23 season

01/26/2023, 8:01am CST
By Mark Miller

The winningest and longest-tenured coach in Wisconsin high school basketball history has decided he's had enough.

Jerry Petitgoue, who has spent the past 52 years as head coach at Cuba City after a stint at now-closed Gratiot, announced he will step down at Cuba City following the season.

"I am officially announcing my retirement," Petitgoue said in a statement released to the press. "My life has been defined by coaching and teaching and I've been on this journey for over six decades. It's rare that somebody gets to do what they love for this long and I have been fortunate to do that."

The 82-year-old Petitgoue became the first coach in state history to win 1,000 games last season and currently sits at 1,018 wins against just 266 losses for a winning percentage of 79 percent.

During his 52 seasons at Cuba City, Petitgoue owns a 956-246 record heading into tonight's game against league-rival Boscobel. 

Eight of his teams at Cuba City advanced to the WIAA State Tournament with the 1981, 1991 and 1998 clubs winning state championships. 

Petitgoue was hired as the Cubans' head coach in June of 1971 after spending the previous few years as an assistant coach in his hometown of Galena, Illinois.

He was the head coach at Gratiot High School for three seasons before that school closed in 1966. He was named the Black Hawk Conference Coach of the Year in 1964 at Gratiot. 

"I love Cuba City High School for the incredible opportunity they offered me for the past 52 years," Petitgoue said. 

While Petitgoue plans to end his coaching career, he said he will remain executive director of the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association as long as his health permits. 

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