West Allegheny opens boys coaching position

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In his 10 seasons as West Allegheny’s boys basketball coach, Josh Bears won a WPIAL championship, made it to the semifinals two other times and qualified for the playoffs five times.

But West Allegheny school officials informed Bears last week that his job will be opened. Bears informed his team of the situation Monday.

Bears, who had a 127-106 record, said he was told of his move by West Allegheny principal Dan Smith and athletic director Dave McBain. Bears, 38, will continue to be an eighth-grade history teacher in the West Allegheny district.

“They told me they decided to pursue finding someone else, but I’m welcome to reapply or resign. I’ve chosen to do neither,” Bears said. “I didn’t want to resign because I didn’t want to send the wrong message to the boys and for them to think I quit on them.”

In other coaching news, Washington boys coach Mark Gaither resigned after five seasons. He was 76-42 and made the WPIAL playoffs four times. Gaither, who coached Ringgold for three seasons and Bethel Park for two, said he wanted to spend more time with his children, ages 4, 7 and 9. “It was a very tough decision, not only because of the bond I have with the guys, but because it’s the best talent I’ve had coming back since I started coaching.”

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