There are some verbs that seem to have quite distinct meanings in the preterite tense. I don't know whether they also seem to change meanings to native speakers or if it just seems completely natural to them.
Sé que ella me engaña. → I know she's cheating on me.
Sabía que ella me engañaba. → I knew she was cheating on me.
Supe que ella me engañaba. → I found out that she was cheating on me.
The preterite version usually seems to have a distinct aspect of a cusp or distinct change.
Puede ganar el juego. → She can win the game.
Podía ganar el juego. → She was capable of winning the game.
Pudo ganar el juego. → She succeeded in winning the game.
No pudo ganar el juego. → She failed to win the game.
The use of
poder here seems much more poetic (and more common in quotidian speech) than something like
Are there other verbs that change their meaning so distinctly in the preterite? Is there some way to recognize them, some sense of meaning that requires the change? Or do they just need to be memorized?