Born: September 20, 1966
Town: Washington Township
Cheryl Reeve was born September 20, 1966 in Omaha, Nebraska. The Reeves were an Air Force family that finally settled in Washngton Township in South Jersey when she was a teenager. A superb student athlete who played baseball on boys teams as a pre-teen, she excelled in the classroom and especially on the basketball court, where she became star of the Washington Twp. High varsity as a sophomore point guard in 1981 under coach Dawn Bunting. Cheryl had great court vision and passing ability. The Minutemaids had a magical season in 1983–84 and later named South Jersey Team of the Decade. Four of Cheryl’s teammates went on to play D-I basketball.
Cheryl earned a hoops scholarship and became a standout for La Salle University in the mid-1980s. The Explorers were nationally ranked in 1987–88 with a 25–5 record. One summer, she worked at Cathy Rush’s basketball camp and discovered she had a knack for teaching the game. After graduation, she stayed at La Salle as an assistant coach. She was an assistant at George Washington University for five years before being named head coach at Indiana State in 1995. In 1999, she led the Sycamores to their first NCAA Tournament berth in a generation.
In 2001, Cheryl moved into the pro ranks as an assistant to Anne Donovan with the Charlotte Sting. The Sting reached the WNBA Finals that year. In 2003, the Cleveland Rockers named Cheryl their head coach. The Rockers disbanded after one season and Cheryl returned to the assistant coaching ranks with the Sting and the Detroit Shock. She also doubled as Detroit’s Director of Player Personnel in 2008. The team’s coach, Bill Laimbeer, mentored Cheryl and constantly tried to fire her up. He showed her that coaching is more than Xs and Os. It requires someone-man or woman—to establish a strong presence in order to truly be successful.
In 2010, Cheryl got her second shot at a head coaching job in the WNBA, with the Minnesota Lynx. She was recommended by Laimbeer, who was working for the NBA Timberwolves. Cheryl inherited a talented lineup that included Seimone Augustus, Maya Moore and Candice Wiggins. The Lynx had the league’s best record in 2011 and won the championship, earning Cheryl Coach of the Year recognition. The Lynx returned to the final in 2012 but lost to the Indiana Fever. The 2014 team, with key additions Lindsay Whalen and Rebekkah Brunson, cruised to the WNBA title without a loss, gong a perfect 7–0.
Cheryl’s club continued its “odd year” championship pattern, defeating the Indiana Fever 3 games to 2 in 2015 behind the MVP performance of Sylvia Fowles. The Lynx edged the Los Angeles Sparks in 2017, with Fowles repeating as MVP. In 2016, Cheryl won her second Coach of the Year award when the Lynx blew through the Western Conference with a 28–6 record, but Minnesota fell in the WNBA Finals. Cheryl and her wife, Carley, have a son, Oliver, and live in the Minneapolis area.