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.
To provide additions/ Thanks!

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O'Hara coach Buddy Gardler and his son, Chris, in 1986

Coach Gardler's All-Stars
And 1,000-Point Scorers

69-75 Kenrick
1977-08 O'Hara

1970 Jim Casciano
1971 Fran Rafferty
1973 Terry Kehoe
1974 Mike Blackwell
1978 Chris Manning
1979 Tom O'Hara
1979 Dave Kerins
1980 Bill Mitchell
1985 Mike Louden
1985 Mike Connor
1987 Mike O'Hara
1988 Eddie Malloy
1989 Eddie Malloy
1990 Steve Cloran
1991 Jeff Macalis
1992 Adonal Foyle
1994 Andrew Gosseaux
1998 Jeff Randazzo
1999 Jeff Randazzo
2000 Fran Grandieri
2001 Gene Willard
1971 Albie Becker
1972 Paul McDade
1973 Tom Grady
1975 Mike Murphy
1978 Dave Kerins
1980 Dennis Arizin
1981 Mark Poplawski
1984 Mike Doyle
1985 Chris Arizin
1989 Joe Giunta
1991 Geoff Beaver
1992 John Watson
1993 Steve LaFashia
1995 Greg Klein
1995 Javier Crespo
1996 Chris Reno
1998 Alex Sazonov
2002 Chris Grandieri
1970 Fran Rafferty
1971 Paul Pfanders
1972 Tom Valerio
1974 Mike Murphy
1975 Jack Vogt
1977 Chris Manning
1980 Tom Gahagan
1980 John McHugh
1981 Tom Jones
1982 Paul Roach
1983 Tim Kelly
1983 Mike Doyle
1984 Mike Connor
1984 Mike Louden
1986 Bill Kirschner
1986 John O'Hare
1986 Mike Brannan
1990 Jeff Macalis
1992 Steve Dougherty
1993 Joe Collins
1995 John Gallagher
1997 Brian Smyth
1997 Alex Sazonov
1998 Lou Becht
1999 Bill Hagan
2001 Chris Grandieri
2003 James Mitchell
2006 Pat Kirby
2007 Jim Kelleher

(All at O'Hara)

1989 Eddie Malloy
1980 Bill Mitchell
1987 Mike O'Hara
1992 Adonal Foyle
1999 Jeff Randazzo
1988 Eddie Malloy
1998 Alex Saznnov
2000 Fran Grandieri
2001 Gene Willard
1,222 -- Eddie Malloy
1,025 -- Mike Connor
Buddy Gardler
Tribute Page

  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.
  Hoping to ensure a victory Friday night for his Cardinal O'Hara basketball team, Gardler spent the second half of a game against St. James in a diamond- and-one defense. He also ensured his house would be church-quiet later that evening and that the dishes might not get done for a week.
  The target of the diamond-and-one was Chris Gardler, a 5-8, 140-pound senior guard, and the son of Buddy.
  Buddy Gardler is not the kind of father who ordinarily would follow a course of action designed to impede his son. But you must consider two ingredients: O'Hara, a 71-64 winner, was continuing its fight for a Catholic South playoff berth, and the Gardlers say they are more like brothers than father and son.
  "I never thought in my life he'd do something like that," said Chris, who scored 12 first-half points and finished with 19, but was rendered a non- factor in the second half by Bill Kirschner, except for a third quarter steal for a three-point play and two field goals in the game's waning moments. ''I guess I should have taken it as a compliment. There was no doubt it hurt us.
  "I was kind of mad, but, no, I didn't look over or say anything. He was trying to win, same as us."
  In the O'Hara locker room, Buddy Gardler was darn near reveling in the events of the evening. A visitor could picture him rushing home to bust on his son/brother.
  "I was kidding him all week," Buddy said. "I was saying, 'We're going to play you in a box. You score half the points.' I don't think he believed me . . . I'd do that to any good player. Nothing personal."
  Buddy and Chris are inseparable in the summertime. If you can't find them playing basketball and taking dips at a swim club close to their Ridley Park home, check out a hoop camp or clinic. They are there, or they will arrive soon.
  Obviously, because of school, Buddy's coaching duties, Chris's playing duties and the nature of the schedule, they don't spend as much time together in wintertime.
  Buddy was able to catch the St. James-Monsignor Bonner game last Monday, but delight turned to fright when Chris was decked on a breakaway layup late in the first half, flipping head over heels and suffering a concussion.
  "I come to watch him play and wind up taking him to the hospital," Buddy said. "That was a tough one for him - for all the St. James kids. They were up by 15 at the half and they had (Bonner star) Ivan Brown in foul trouble. Then they lost by seven."
  St. James, which fell again, 70-56, at West Catholic yesterday, is 0-26 in division games in the past two seasons, but Chris Gardler has risen above the gloom to become a player worthy of sustained attention from Ursinus, Pharmacy, Widener, Cabrini and Moravian.
  Chris, a member of the National Honor Society, ranked No. 14 in the senior class academically, averages 16 points and four assists. He possesses an uncanny ability to milk numerous trips to the foul line, and once he gets there, he rings up the points on the scoreboard; he's an 84-percenter.
  "The first time we played them, he had a perfect game - 4-for-6 and 8-for-8 for 16 points," Buddy said. "Before he got hurt, he controlled that Bonner game, too. He's a cocky kid. That's his personality. At 5-8, I guess you have to be that way."
  Chris estimates he stood 5-foot tall and weighed 90 pounds as a freshman. Buddy, a product of Bonner and St. Joseph's, was late to mature physically and since Chris's hands and feet (size 11 sneakers) are big, there is hope he will become bigger and stronger.
  It would be almost impossible, meanwhile, to make their relationship any stronger.
  "We're more like brothers, but he's still my father first," Chris said. ''He makes sure I stay out of trouble, that I don't get involved in some of the things other kids get involved in.
  "I was looking forward to playing against him again. It gave me more of an incentive to play hard. I love playing when there's meaning to the game. We were thinking of making a bet; like, the loser would have to do the chores for a while. We're always battling over who's king of the house. Usually, he gets his way."  
   continued right below . . . 

Coach Buddy Gardler in 1977

(Overall, Where Available)
1969: 5-11
1970: 12-4 / 16-7
1971: 12-4 / 16-7
1972: 4-12
1973: 9-7
1974: 6-10 / 13-14
1975: 9-7
Kenrick Total: 57-55
Overall: 97-72
1976: Assistant at
American Univ.)
1977: 3-11
1978: 6-8  
1979: 9-5
1980: 11-3
1981: 5-9
1982: 4-10 
1983: 5-9 
1984: 6-6
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
(*Determined from
Several Sources)
Appearances Ended in  . . .

Quarterfinals (10)
1970, 1971, 1973, 1979, 1985,
1990, 1991, 1995, 1999, 2001
Semifinals (5)
1980, 1984, 1986, 1989, 1992
Final (1)

(Yellow at Kenrick)
Fran Grandieri 2000 23.2
Eddie Malloy 1988 22.6
Eddie Malloy 1989 22.4
Mike O'Hara 1987 21.2
Steve Cloran 1990 18.8
Jeff Randazzo 1999 18.8
Adonal Foyle 1992 18.4
Chris Manning 1978 17.4
Mike Louden 1985 16.9
Gene Willard 2001 16.9
Mike Blackwell 1974 16.1
Terry Kehoe 1973 15.9
Fran Rafferty 1971 15.8
Bill Mitchell 1980 15.6
Jim Casciano 1970 15.4
Andrew Gosseaux 1994 15.4
Greg Klein 1995 15.4
Chris Grandieri 2002 14.9
Albie Becker 1971 14.7
Steve LaFashia 1993 14.6


  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
frontcourt starter.
  "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
game. "
  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
the playground."
  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
        Spencer Sandy 2008
        Walter Montgomery 2008
        Zach Tansey 2008