- Last Updated: 11:01 AM, November 18, 2012
- Posted: 2:10 AM, November 18, 2012
The basketball coach at a prestigious Catholic high school in Queens was yanked from the team while administrators investigate claims he watched his players shower, sources told The Post yesterday.
Paul Gilvary, 49, varsity head coach at Holy Cross HS in Flushing, was put on administrative leave amid the allegations he hovered near the student-athletes as they soaped up — and made it mandatory for them to shower.
Gilvary, a reigning Coach of the Year, was removed from the team on Nov. 10.
The mother of one current player told The Post that some of his teammates were “uncomfortable” with the coach’s peeping.
“He sometimes would come in and talk to them while they were in the shower,” she said. “Some of the kids didn’t like it. As far as I know, that’s all that happened.”
Holy Cross launched its probe into Gilvary after a teacher overheard three junior players talking about the alleged shower spying.
“A few kids were joking around, [saying] ‘Why do you want to be on Varsity ‘A’ when the coach will watch you shower,” said a school source.
The teacher then took the students to Holy Cross president the Rev. Walter Jenkins.
“They interviewed the three kids, and asked, ‘How do you feel about Coach Gilvary watching you shower?’ ” the source said, adding, “They said they didn’t like it.
“One of them said, ‘We were joking — we didn’t mean for this to go this far.’ ”
Jenkins wouldn’t comment, only saying via e-mail, “We will have something for you most likely on Monday.”
Gilvary, who also serves as the school’s admissions director, has been a coach at Holy Cross for 16 years.
He’s heavily involved with the Catholic High School Athletic Association, where he’s chairman of the boys soccer league, basketball league and assigning umpires in baseball.
Gilvary has won one CHSAA city championship with Holy Cross and is the reigning New York Post All-Queens boys basketball Coach of the Year.
“He’s horrified,” one Holy Cross colleague said. “He’s fighting for his reputation.”
Gilvary and head assistant coach Robert Offley would periodically check on showering players to make sure they weren’t messing around, the source said.
But no parents have complained, the source said.
“Not once has a parent come up to me and said I’m uncomfortable with the shower,” the source said. “And not one time has a kid come up to me and said he’s uncomfortable, and kids tells me everything.’
Assistant coach Lloyd Desvigne was shocked by the allegations.
“Everybody is very, very frustrated and stunned,” said Desvigne, who ran a scrimmage Wednesday against Wings Academy in Gilvary’s place.
“I’ve been with the program since he became varsity coach. No one ever came to me with any issue regarding that. Not one child in 17 years.”
Desvigne did admit that showering, however, was mandatory.
“He told the kids to shower, for hygiene and recovery,” he said. “It’s one of those rules.”
Joseph Tock, Gilvary’s lawyer, said he’s reached out to Holy Cross and school attorneys to no avail.
“[Gilvary] has a sterling reputation, and hundreds of players, many players who played in college or are currently playing in college, would vouch for him,” Tock said.
Former students rushed to Gilvary’s defense. Marquise Moore, Holy Cross graduate and star on last year’s team, said he “always felt comfortable” with the coach.
“He never watched us shower,” Moore said. “It is surprising to me.
“He never did anything to make us feel in harm’s way, or anything like that.”
Additional reporting by Erin Calabrese and Marc Raimondi