Philadelphia High School Basketball
A Look at Buddy Gardler's 39-Year Coaching Career
At Bishop Kenrick (1969-75) and Cardinal O'Hara (1977-2008)
This page includes stories, special lists, record breakdown and (at the bottom) the
names of all varsity players during Coach Harrison "Buddy" Gardler's 39 seasons.
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Harrison "Buddy" Gardler coached basketball at Bishop Kenrick (1969-75) and Cardinal O'Hara (1977-2008) for 39 total seasons, setting the record for most overall wins by a Catholic League coach (560). A triumph in 1986 created quite an entertaining stir because Buddy used a junk defense to stop his son, Chris, a franchise player for St. James. Here is that story . . .
By Ted Silary
Buddy Gardler officially has forfeited all chances to win any organization's
Father of the Year award for 1986.
(Overall, Where Available)
1970: 12-4 / 16-7
1971: 12-4 / 16-7
1974: 6-10 / 13-14
Kenrick Total: 57-55
(1976: Assistant at
1985: 9-5 / 21-8
1986: 8-6 / 20-9
1987: 4-10 / 11-13
1988: 6-8 / 14-10
1989: 12-2 / 20-6
1990: 9-5 / 16-10
1991: 11-3 / 18-7
1992: 13-1 / 24-3
1993: 7-7 / 10-16
1994: 7-7 / 10-16
1995: 7-7 / 17-11
1996: 2-12 / 8-15
1997: 5-9 / 12-13
1998: 13-1 / 23-4
1999: 7-7 / 15-12
2000: 6-8 / 11-15
2001: 8-6 / 18-8
2002: 4-10 / 10-14
2003: 3-11 / 9-14
2004: 3-11 / 6-18
2005: 5-9 / 14-11
2006: 6-8 / 12-13
2007: 5-9 / 8-16
2008: 4-10 / 10-14
O'Hara Total: 213-233
Overall, Where Available: 463-341
39 Seasons, 1969-75, 1977-2008
League - 270-288
*Overall - 560-413
Appearances Ended in . . .
1970, 1971, 1973, 1979, 1985,
1990, 1991, 1995, 1999, 2001
1980, 1984, 1986, 1989, 1992
Because he teaches at O'Hara,
archdiocesan rules would have permitted Buddy Gardler to enroll Chris in
that school. But
Chris was intent on attending St. James with his grade-school buddies, including next-door neighbor Dennis Dougherty, a
"Chris is the type of kid I never had a problem with," Buddy said. "A lot of things could have worked against him, but he's
pretty well adjusted. If I want to go to bed at 11 o'clock on a Friday night, I can do it because I know he'll be in before 12.
"He has loved his four years at St. James. How many kids can say they love going to school? He does. He's up and out the
door with no problems. People can't believe that I never pushed him into basketball, but it's true. The only thing I ever
pushed him to do was to get good grades."
Although the miracle of videotape has allowed father to see son in a handful of extra games this season, Chris sometimes
finds himself questioning his father's motives.
"He says he watches our games to see me play," Chris said, laughing. "I think all he's doing is scouting. We were watching
some tapes the other night and when us against Carroll came on, he said, 'Shut it off.' That was because his team had already
played them twice."
O'Hara and St. James also have met twice already, of course. And don't think for a second that Buddy will let Chris forget
the outcomes, either.
This story was written in 1992 after
Buddy and the Lions terminated Roman's 49-game
winning streak, counting playoffs, in Catholic League action . . .
By Ted Silary
Back home on Union Island, in a Caribbean nation called St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Adonal Foyle's budding
basketball career was not exactly followed by the multitudes.
First, there were no multitudes.
Second, there were no gymnasiums and no stands at the outdoor courts.
"The most people who watched me play? Maybe 100," Foyle said. "No seats. They'd stand around the side of the court."
Close to 3,000 people - 1,000 more than live on Union Island - streamed into St. Joseph's Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse
last night to watch a Catholic South doubleheader featuring four of the prime playoff contenders.
No wonder Foyle was nervous. No wonder it showed, at least in part.
Foyle, a 6-9, 220-pound sophomore, shot just two-for-12 from the foul line en route to eight points. But he also snatched
16 rebounds, blocked nine shots and altered three others - hey, special players deserve special statistical categories - as
Cardinal O'Hara dumped Roman Catholic, 53-46, to terminate the Cahillites' 49-game league winning streak.
In Game 1, Mike Dever (14 points, nine assists), Jay Moran (nine points, 15 rebounds) and Bill Carr (17 points) led
Monsignor Bonner past West Catholic, 74-46.
Roman, the three-time defending champion, had last lost to a league foe on Jan. 29, 1989. The winner was O'Hara, 45-42.
The Cahillites won 10 to finish '89, all 17 in '90 and '91 and the first five this season. The streak was 50 against league
opposition overall, counting a tournament win last December against Bishop Kenrick.
As the final buzzer sounded last night, the grief was not widespread. Substitute guard Bill Shank lay briefly on the floor
with his head covering his hands, but most of the players merely shook their heads in mild disgust, slapped five with
O'Hara's players, then trotted to the locker room.
"Nobody's that upset," said forward Kyle Locke, Roman's lone veteran. ''We'll see them again. This wasn't a championship
Added coach Dennis Seddon: "We didn't shoot well (18-for-59) and we didn't deserve to win. What you saw tonight was
a good senior team beating a good junior team."
Seddon opined that lead guard John Watson and the Lions' other starters aside from Foyle (Steve Dougherty, Brian
Patterson and Brian O'Donnell) had made the difference. And there was merit in that. But Foyle's contributions were too
large to be minimized.
"We'd been hearing so many things about him," Locke said. "But until you go play against him . . . Phew, we didn't know
he was this good."
It was in the fieldhouse, at a camp last summer, that Foyle had first played ball in America. Spectators were few, of course.
"This was something to get adjusted to, definitely," Foyle said, referring to the near-sellout. "I knew we had to win this
game, and that made me put pressure on myself. It made me sick to keep missing foul shots. How many was it, 20? I was
so bothered by it, I had trouble concentrating. I was mad at myself."
As usual, the Lions rarely looked to Foyle in their set offense. That was particularly so after three early possessions
resulted in a rejection, a double-dribble and a traveling call on which his feet got badly tangled.
But timing and jumping were never a problem.
"It makes you a little more gung-ho (on defense) with Adonal behind you," Watson said. "You can take some chances."
Said Foyle: "No matter how I struggle for points, I can still be important to the team. If I don't do it at the offensive end,
I can do it at the defensive end.
"To block shots, I try to make sure what the player has going. Does he have another bounce? What other alternatives
does he have? If he's in the air, I know I have great leaping ability and a chance to block the shot. I just want to make sure
that he has already used his bounces, and he's about to take the shot."
Watson, who had struggled recently, and who then had missed practice all week with strep throat, gave a vintage
performance. He shot well en route to 19 points (8-for-14, 3-for-6 on "threes") and collected eight assists.
"I've been talking to him a lot," coach Buddy Gardler said. "I talk to him more than I talk to my own son."
Because of his throat, Watson had trouble talking to anyone.
"I couldn't yell that well," he said. "I have a light voice. Nobody can hear me in practice anyway. It didn't seem like our
offense ever got into sync. That was probably my fault. I wasn't running it right, I guess. But we won. We must have
done something right.
"(The recent problems) were all in my head. Mr. Gardler and I sat down and he gave me a lecture. He told me what I
was doing wrong and how to correct it. It pretty much came down to me just playing my game, just like I do down at
Watson had a meaningful flurry late in the third quarter. Not only did he drain a "three" and fire a nifty pass to O'Donnell,
who did the same. As the quarter ended, he ducked under a defender and nailed an off-balance jumper to give the Lions
a 38-30 lead.
Down the stretch, Roman could not quite make the Lions sweat.
"My point to the kids was, this is our biggest game (to date), but you could possibly play them three times," Gardler
said. "I was afraid to have them go out there and run around like chickens."
For the players, there was no fear.
"Last year," Watson said, "I had the feeling we could beat them. Then I'd see them walk in and it was, 'We're not going
to beat this team.' This year, thank God, we have a big guy who can do a lot and guys like Steve Dougherty, Brian
O'Donnell and Brian Patterson, and a whole bench filled with good players. So, yeah, I felt we had a chance."
This story was written for the
Daily News in January 1970 as Buddy steered Kenrick
toward its first playoff berth . . .
Below are the players who helped
Buddy Gardler claim 560 wins over 39 total seasons as a
Catholic League coach -- 7 at Bishop Kenrick, 32 at Cardinal O'Hara. The year indicates the
player's final season. Most were seniors. Some transferred and some were underclassmen
who did not play in the following season.
|Steve McDonald||1969||Andy Callahan||1983||Andrew Byrne||1996|
|Joe Kelly||1969||Mark Kent||1983||Chris Barksdale||1996|
|Jim Travers||1969||Mike Deckert||1983||Chris Reno||1996|
|Ted Sitarz||1969||Mike O'Brien||1983||Phil Miraglia||1996|
|Jim Casciano||1970||Tim Kelly||1983||Ryan Gallagher||1996|
|Tom Brady||1970||Bill Keane||1984||Steve Greim||1996|
|Bruce Geary||1970||Chicky Pollick||1984||Vince May||1996|
|Jim Brock||1970||John Sheehan||1984||Ander Pineda||1997|
|Bill Costello||1970||Mike Doyle||1984||Andre Morton||1997|
|Steve Greb||1970||Rick Hartz||1984||Brian Smyth||1997|
|Jack Eisenmann||1970||Bill Ryan||1985||Jeff DiBlasi||1997|
|Fran Rafferty||1971||Chris Arizin||1985||P.J. Vanni||1997|
|Albie Becker||1971||Dan DeVries||1985||Pat Schmid||1997|
|Paul Pfanders||1971||Joe Hemphill||1985||Shawn McCray||1997|
|Jack Eisenmann||1971||Mike Connor||1985||Alex Sazonov||1998|
|Bill Gordon||1971||Mike Louden||1985||Devon Johnson||1998|
|J. O'Hara||1971||Tim Donaghy||1985||J.D. Dodds||1998|
|Paul McDade||1972||Bill Kirschner||1986||Lou Becht||1998|
|Tom Valerio||1972||Brian Kilroy||1986||Bill Hagan||1999|
|Bob Mullen||1972||Dean O'Toole||1986||Bob McEntee||1999|
|Geno Auriemma||1972||Jay Armitage||1986||Derrick Dougherty||1999|
|Brian Walesyn||1972||Jim Lynam||1986||Jeff Randazzo||1999|
|Eddie Porretti||1972||John O'Hare||1986||Jeff Siti||1999|
|Tom Grady||1973||Mick Houston||1986||Joe McGinn||1999|
|Jack Hannan||1973||Mike Brannan||1986||Tim Smith||1999|
|Terry Kehoe||1973||Rob Prince||1986||Biff Duffy||2000|
|John Rodenbaugh||1973||Roger Kent||1986||Bob Purpura||2000|
|Len Vuotto||1973||Al Huntzman||1987||Fran Grandieri||2000|
|Mike Blackwell||1974||Bob Wenke||1987||Frank Craig||2000|
|Dennis Angeloni||1974||James McNelis||1987||James Johnson||2000|
|Mike DiSiro||1974||Jerry Daudert||1987||Mike Zamulinsky||2000|
|Tom Vogt||1974||John Weir||1987||Chris Smyth||2001|
|Steve Eisenmann||1974||Mike O'Hara||1987||Ed Sinclair||2001|
|Tony Lowe||1974||Steve Delaney||1987||Gene Willard||2001|
|Bernie Hober||1974||Tom Caruso||1987||Ken Grant||2001|
|Jawood Carlin||1974||Chris Donaghy||1988||Mike Lomas||2001|
|Jack Vogt||1975||Ed Dougherty||1988||Bob McAndrews||2002|
|Paul Mulholland||1975||Jeff DellaFranco||1988||Chris Grandieri||2002|
|Jim McShea||1975||Jim Marquet||1988||Fran Burbidge||2002|
|Mike Murphy||1975||Matt Mullen||1988||Greg D'Elia||2002|
|Phil Eisenmann||1975||Mike Kane||1988||Harry Dougherty||2002|
|Bernie Hober||1975||Scott Connell||1988||Kevin Floyd||2002|
|John Mulholland||1975||Bill Kelly||1989||Mark Barrar||2002|
|Tom Catagnus||1975||Christian Gosseaux||1989||Pat Baylor||2002|
|Butch Bontempo||1975||Dave Fisher||1989||Ryan Cleary||2002|
|Joe Costantino||1975||Eddie Malloy||1989||Steve Baylor||2002|
|Joe Matteo||1975||Frank Stempin||1989||Ted Rydesky||2002|
|Tony Salamone||1975||Jack Clark||1989||Tom Convery||2002|
|Andy Hoffner||1977||Joe Giunta||1989||Alex Gineitis||2003|
|Dave Brown||1977||Matt Daudert||1989||Brian Campbell||2003|
|Duke Callahan||1977||Mike Dougherty||1989||Craig Haywood||2003|
|Jim Martin||1977||Pat Guinan||1989||James Mitchell||2003|
|John Coyle||1977||Dan McManus||1990||Jeff Nowell||2003|
|John Dischert||1977||Eric Parker||1990||John Brennan||2003|
|Sean Kearney||1977||Kevin Cloran||1990||Jon Contois||2003|
|Skip Mark||1977||Sean Tucker||1990||Mark Greim||2003|
|Bill Helmig||1978||Shawn Casey||1990||Rodney Burton||2003|
|Bill Pollick||1978||Steve Cloran||1990||Sean Barksdale||2003|
|Chris Manning||1978||Brian McTague||1991||Harry Duke||2004|
|Chuck Creighton||1978||Geoff Beaver||1991||Jim Smith||2004|
|Joe Breslin||1978||Jeff Macalis||1991||Joe Howarth||2004|
|Leo Doyle||1978||Mark Johnson||1991||Matt Campbell||2004|
|Mike McCarry||1978||Sean Burns||1991||Ryan McAndrews||2004|
|Bob Rafferty||1979||Adonal Foyle||1992||Tom Durkin||2004|
|Chris Duffin||1979||Brendan Patrick||1992||Gabe Diaz||2005|
|Dave Kerins||1979||Brian O'Donnell||1992||Greg Parker||2005|
|Frank McAndrew||1979||Brian Patterson||1992||Jim Young||2005|
|Pete Callahan||1979||John Watson||1992||Mark Concannon||2005|
|Tom O'Hara||1979||Matt Jennings||1992||Pat Young||2005|
|Tom Schneider||1979||Steve Dougherty||1992||Rich Varrasse||2005|
|Bill Mitchell||1980||Tom Clavin||1992||Will Lindsay||2005|
|Bob Nelson||1980||Drew Baylor||1993||Anthony Walters||2006|
|Dennis Arizin||1980||Jason Greim||1993||Calvin Gilbert||2006|
|Dennis Sheehan||1980||Joe Collins||1993||Chris Myers||2006|
|John McHugh||1980||Steve Kelly||1993||Marius Jankauskas||2006|
|Marty Purcell||1980||Steve LaFashia||1993||Pat Kirby||2006|
|Steve DiMarco||1980||Terrence DiBernardino||1993||Scott Taylor||2006|
|Steve Donahue||1980||Andrew Gosseaux||1994||Troy Kyle||2006|
|Tom Gahagan||1980||Dan Carroll||1994||Bill Pondok||2007|
|Bob Wright||1981||Dave Shaak||1994||T.J. Long||2007|
|Kevin Jennings||1981||Kevin Barrar||1994||Anthony Bertolino||2008|
|Mark Poplawski||1981||Mike Gilbert||1994||Dan Kearney||2008|
|Marty Cull||1981||Mike Reinking||1994||Eric Hughes||2008|
|Tim Tuoni||1981||Nate Smith||1994||Jim Kelleher||2008|
|Tom Creighton||1981||Alexander Belov||1995||Josh Rogers||2008|
|Tom Murphy||1981||Billy Thompson||1995||Josh Showers||2008|
|Brian Connelly||1982||Greg Klein||1995||Kevin Merkle||2008|
|Ed Snow||1982||Javier Crespo||1995||Mark Wedderburn||2008|
|Jerry Bradley||1982||Jim Halligan||1995||Matt Romano||2008|
|Joe Dugan||1982||John Gallagher||1995||Matt Vogel||2008|
|John Huver||1982||Mike Ceppetelli||1995||Mingone||2008|
|Larry McAlee||1982||Tim Griesser||1995||Phil Lindsay||2008|
|Pat Kelly||1982||Tom Burke||1995||Ryan Laughlin||2008|
|Paul Roach||1982||Ryan Wolski||2008|
|Ted Morgan||1982||Sean Young||2008|