Team of the Year: Episcopal Academy

Episcopal Academy started without much in the way of high expectations.

Coming off an underwhelming 2011 that resulted in only three wins, there was a lot to like about the Churchmen. They were loaded with senior talent, but there were questions about whether they were good enough to compete with the Malvern Preps and Haverford Schools of the Inter-Ac landscape.

Malvern was the preseason favorite to win it all, with Haverford School a close

A visual aid to describe Ian Strain's All-Delco DB status.

A visual aid to illutrate Ian Strain’s, right, All-Delco DB status.

second. So much attention was focused on those programs, and for good reason.

People scoffed at EA’s easy nonleague schedule. The Churchmen opened some eyes when they manhandled Interboro in a Week 2 showdown. When they were promptly rank among the likes of Ridley and Garnet Valley in the Daily Times Super 7, there was disagreement. Defeating quality opponent in Interboro (a Class AAA school vs. EA’s AA classification, no less) was considered a small feather in the cap, but the doubting persisted.

This team can’t possibly compete with the big dogs, right?

Well, if destroying Interboro wasn’t enough proof that EA was arguably the top team in the county in 2012, the Churchmen went ahead and blew out Malvern and, two weeks later, defeated Haverford School on the final day of the season to win the Inter-Ac championship.

The 14 points they allowed in that game was the most they gave up all season.

The debate will last for quite some time. Could Episcopal ever beat Ridley or Garnet Valley or Academy Park? We’ll never know for sure, but they could hang with the best of them.

The Churchmen earned the right to be called Delcofootball’s Team of the Year.

Some stats to leave you with:

  • Episcopal outscored its opponents, 368-35. Its points allowed were the fewest in the county (Ridley was second at 156, albeit including more games).
  • Posted six shutouts, including three in a row to start the season.
  • QB and Daily Times Player of the Year Adam Strouss had at least one touchdown in every game.
  • Team scored seven touchdowns on three separate occasions.
  • Only the fifth undefeated Inter-Ac team since 1990 and the first since 2008.
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About mattsmith

Matt Smith is an award-winning local sports writer for the Delaware County Times. A Delco native, Matt's covered local, pro and college sports at the Delco Times since 2006. In 2013, he won a Pennsylvania Keystone Press Award for Best Sports Coverage. He was runner up for a similar award in 2009 and also nominated 2011. Follow him on Twitter @DTMattSmith

5 thoughts on “Team of the Year: Episcopal Academy

  1. Well, the debate went on all season about how good EA was.

    I saw Ridley and GV play, and EA playing them would have been great games.

    I give EA the edge because their D was every bit as good as Ridley and their O was the best in the county.

    I don’t think many readers got to see EA play.

    Here are highlights of Adam Strouss from just about every game this year.

    With these Hudl videos you often have to keep clicking the play button to keep them going.

    http://www.hudl.com/athlete/373522/highlights/16933379

    Here is EA’s Hudl team page.

    http://www.hudl.com/team/14338/roster

    I’d suggest looking at vids for first and second all-Delco players like Teddy Ibarguen, Matt McLaughlin, Evan Butts, Jack Florio, Ian Strain, Quinn Hager, Terrell Smith and Donte Addona to get a feel for the team.

    Congrats to all the EA players and coaches for being recognized as Delco team of the year for 2012!

    • Nobody can argue with this call. EA deserves this recognition hands down. Matt asks, “Can EA beat GV, Ridley or Academy Park”? If EA were to play Ridley or GV it would be a teriffic game to see (one in which I would go to definitely) as far as Academy Park EA would just utterly destroy them, no contest. Great year team and coaches

    • Well, it wouldn’t be the first time the Daily Times sports has, um… “inspired” the city papers. We are used to the copycating.

      Funny how EA was pretty much ignored until they beat Malvern…

      • Speaking of Rick, here are the Delco players who made his all-SE PA team.

        1st team offense:

        L Matt Donoghue Garnet Valley Sr. 6-4 278
        TE Rashon Fentress Interboro Sr. 6-3 215
        AP Adam Strouss Episcopal Academy Sr. 6-3 200

        2nd team offense:

        L Jack Florio Episcopal Academy Sr. 6-2 270
        RB Kevin Leyden Haverford High Jr. 6-1 175
        PK Aron Morgan Haverford School Sr. 6-0 170

        3rd team offense:

        L Matt Sinex Ridley Sr. 6-2 250
        RB Jerry Lanier Academy Park Jr. 5-8 160
        AP Chris Morgan Haverford School Sr. 6-0 170
        AP Ian Strain Episcopal Academy Sr. 6-0 175

        4th team offense:

        L Donte Burgese Garnet Valley Sr. 6-1 225
        L Carmen Cervella Cardinal O’Hara Sr. 6-2 290

        ———————-

        1st team defense:

        LB Shane Dougherty Ridley Sr. 6-0 200
        LB Matt Galambos Haverford School Sr. 6-2 225

        2nd team defense:

        None

        3rd team defense:

        LB Mike Dougherty Springfield (D) Sr. 5-10 200
        B Joe DeMaio Cardinal O’Hara Sr. 5-11 175
        B Jim Haley Bonner-Prendie Sr. 6-2 190

        4th team defense:

        L Evan Butts Epsiccopal Academy Jr. 6-4 215
        L Steve Plousis Ridley Sr. 6-2 200
        L Joe Smith Bonner-Prendie Sr. 6-1 255
        LB Sonny Armstrong Interboro Jr. 5-6 180
        LB Steve Elf Garnet Valley Sr. 5-11 215
        DB Marcus Sydnor Haverford High Sr. 5-10 150

        Congrats to these players.

        I can also think of quite a few Delco players from a variety of teams I would have had up there, but Rick has a tough job having to consider so many schools across all of SE PA.

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