Chris Drenning, the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic Higher College boys basketball coach the previous 11 seasons, is no longer with the plan soon after each Drenning and the college confirmed BG decided to open the position on Wednesday.
He led the Marauders to a record of 219-74.
“(Wednesday) evening I was informed that the head boys basketball coaching position at Bishop Guilfoyle was going to be opened up,” Drenning stated. “I did not resign or retire from my position as the head coach. I was informed that the cause for this action was for the reason that of a narrative that exists inside some in the BG college/neighborhood that the boys basketball plan wasn’t supportive of multi-sport athletes in the plan.
“It was expressed to me that this narrative has grown out of manage more than time. This topic has been discussed many instances more than the previous 18-24 months with me by our administration. I’ve constantly prided myself on playing the group members who give us the finest opportunity to win on any provided evening. I’m hopeful that our record would indicate this truth. I think this ‘narrative’ is misguided and that we as a plan attempted to manage it the right way. Certainly other people differed with that opinion.”
Bishop Guilfoyle principal Michael Cacciotti stated a meeting was held with Drenning on Wednesday and the choice was produced.
“It was a meeting with Chris and a discussion with Chris,” Cacciotti stated. “It just felt like it was time for us to open the position.”
The Marauders have won 11 state playoff games due to the fact 2017.
“We’re incredibly grateful to Coach Drenning for his years of dedication to the Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic Higher College, to the boys basketball plan and to all the athletes that played for him more than the years,” Bishop Guilfoyle athletic director Joe Landolfi stated. “A choice was produced to open the head boys basketball coach at the college.”
The move came 4 days soon after the Marauders had been eliminated from the PIAA playoffs.
“He’s been head of the plan for the final 11 years, and he’s accomplished truly superior points for the plan and truly superior points for the college,” Cacciotti stated. “The college just felt that this was the time to open the position.”
Drenning has the alternative to re-apply.
“It’s open, anyone can apply,” Cacciotti stated.
Drenning confirmed Thursday evening that he does not strategy to re-apply.
BG won the 2023 Laurel Highlands Athletic Conference championship game more than Central, but lost a heartbreaker to Penn Cambria in the District six Class 3A championship game just before falling to Loyalsock Township, 59-57, in the initially round of the PIAA playoffs final Saturday.
“I’m so fortunate to have coached at BG and to have the good results we’ve enjoyed more than our 11 seasons,” Drenning stated. “The good factor about coaching higher college basketball is that you forge lifelong relationships with most importantly your players, but also your coaching employees, coaches from about the state and the college neighborhood at big. You otherwise could under no circumstances have met quite a few of these folks if it wasn’t for coaching. I’m fortunate to have the relationships we’ve created inside our plan, and how quite a few of them reached out now.”
Drenning led the Marauders to the PIAA Class 2A championship game in 2019 with existing Saint Francis basketball player Luke Ruggery top the charge but lost, 54-52, to Math, Civics & Sciences.
He also guided them to the state semifinals in Class 3A in 2021 but lost yet another heartbreaker at the buzzer to Brookville, 46-44.
“Chris has fairly the accolades on the floor,” stated Cacciotti, who has a son, Michael, that was a sophomore on this year’s Marauder basketball group. “He’s got the plan in a superior spot. Really honestly, we’re excited about the plan and its future. We believe the program’s future is vibrant. We are excited for the future.”
Senior Patrick Haigh became the school’s all-time leader in scoring for higher college boys basketball this year and completed his profession with 1,744 points, topping Ruggery’s record. Haigh, his sophomore brother Jude and their sister Teresa, who won a PIAA Class 1A girls championship at Bishop Guilfoyle in 2021, retweeted a tweet Thursday supporting Drenning from Patrick Haigh’s former teammate at Bishop Guilfoyle, Cameron Khoza, who is at the moment playing college basketball at Scranton.
“Drenning has been an remarkable coach and father figure for me and so quite a few of his previous players, and I’m sad to see him go,” Patrick Haigh stated. “The quantity of good results he’s had is outstanding with all the playoff wins and 20-win seasons, and he produced it appear uncomplicated at instances.”
No other coaching positions had been opened by Bishop Guilfoyle beyond the boys basketball plan.
“All positions on the (varsity) boys basketball group will be opened,” Cacciotti stated. “Just the JV and varsity positions (have been opened). The junior higher coach, Rob Okonak, will stay in his position.”
Drenning was assisted by John Craig, Tom Goss and Mike Crownover this season. Craig has been with Drenning as an assistant for the previous 11 seasons at Bishop Guilfoyle and has coached with Drenning general for the previous 17 years.
Craig was vital of BG’s choice.
“He didn’t get a fair shake at all,” Craig stated. “It has been a lengthy season, a pretty lengthy season, with a fractured group of men and women. It began with a group of parents, and that is the way it went. It is a weird factor to say soon after the season we had, for the reason that I do not believe anybody would think that it would go that way, but it was jaw-dropping and beautiful for me. Chris is so significantly much more committed to his craft than what anybody would think, and I’m at a loss for words.”
The hiring approach to discover Bishop Guilfoyle’s subsequent coach has currently began.
“We strategy on opening the position straight away and collecting applications in the subsequent week or two,” Cacciotti stated. “We truly would like to have a new head coach in spot by the middle to the finish of April.”
When asked if Bishop Guilfoyle’s overall performance on the court played a function or if there had been any off-the-court things in opening the position, Cacciotti repeated his praise for Drenning.
“Coach Drenning has constantly been superior for our plan and for our college,” Cacciotti stated.
Drenning stressed that he’ll treasure the memories he produced at Bishop Guilfoyle.
“I’m pretty proud of our plan, the folks and players who’ve been in it, and how they’ve represented themselves and BG more than the final 11 years,” Drenning stated. “A record of 219 wins and 74 losses, 5 District six titles, and 4 LHAC championships, along with appearances in a PIAA state title game in 2019, a PIAA semifinal game in 2021, and a PIAA quarterfinal game in 2022 leaves area for lots of fond memories. I’ve been blessed with not only these experiences but quite a few other people and I will constantly be grateful to these who helped make them probable.”
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