St. Bernard’s reinstates Thrap as basketball coach


Ray Hamill/ – St. Bernard’s head coach Steve Thrap talks to one of his players during a recent game.

By Ray Hamill — St. Bernard’s announced early Saturday afternoon that Steve Thrap has been reinstated as head coach of the boys basketball program after being placed on administrative leave two days ago.

A press release from the school read, “St. Bernard’s Academy varsity basketball coach Steve Thrap served a one-game suspension and will return to the helm of the Crusader basketball program effective immediately.”

Thrap missed Friday night’s game at Hoopa Valley, which the Crusaders lost by a score of 78-45.

He was placed on administrative leave for using what was deemed inappropriate language to his players during a recent game.

“As we tell our student-athletes: ‘short term discomfort is how you build long term strength.’ I think this situation was a prime example of that,” St. Bernard’s Athletic Director Ryan Bisio said in the press release.

School principal Paul Shanahan added, “Coach Thrap stands shoulder to shoulder in the beloved fraternity of boys basketball coaches at St. Bernard’s with local legends like Ernie Cunningham, Ray Mechals, Bob Bonomini, and Bob Robertson – coaches who mentored years of Crusader graduates. I look forward to Steve’s continued leadership of our basketball program.”

Thrap has served as head coach of the program since 2007.

According to the press release, he began volunteering as a graduate assistant for coach Bob Robertson at St. Bernard’s in 1988. 

“I am very happy to be reinstated as basketball coach at St. Bernard’s Academy,” Thrap said. “The administration at St. Bernard’s and I have been in constant communication since the time of my suspension. I understand and fully embrace the expectations of our program, and I look forward getting back to coaching the boys.” 

Thrap’s return comes at a crucial time of the season for the Crusaders, who travel to South Fork on Tuesday to open the Dick Niclai Memorial Tournament, and will tip off the North Coast Section playoffs in about 10 days.

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