Connect with us

Winter Sports

All-Delco Boys Basketball: Chester co-star Taylor earns nod for all-around leadership

Bonner-Prendie's Tyreese Watson goes up for a shot in a game against Roman Catholic during the regular season. (Pete Bannan/MediaNews Group)

In addition to player of the year Karell Watkins of Chester, the rest of the All-Delco team includes:

Akeem Taylor, dunking on Simon Gratz in the PIAA Class 6A boys basketball second round, played his last game in a Clippers uniform. The PIAA canceled the remainder of the winter sports championships as well as the spring sports season in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. (Pete Bannan/MediaNews Group)

Akeem Taylor, Chester: The senior guard was the engine that drove the Clippers to the Del Val League title (part of a 31-game in-league winning streak) and the quarterfinals of the PIAA Class 6A tournament before the season was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic. Taylor was second on the Clippers to Watkins in averaging 14.4 points per game, but his contributions far exceeded his offensive output. Taylor averaged 7.6 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.7 steals and 3.9 blocks per game, an all-around statistical demon who filled roles as Chester’s most consistent offensive playmaker and its best defensive stopper. He scored in double figures in 24 of 28 games for the Clippers, who finished with a 24-4 record. Taylor topped out at 27 points in the regular-season finale against Christiana. He scored 24 on three occasions, including a win over South Philadelphia High in December in which Taylor hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to force the game to overtime. He added 16 points in the District 1 Class 6A semifinal loss to Methacton and 21 in the win over Bensalem in the third-place game. Taylor, who spent his freshman year at the former Chester Charter School for the Arts, finished his career with 1,033 points, 15 fewer than his uncle and Chester High coach Keith Taylor. Akeem scored his 1,000th career point in the District 1 third-place game against Bensalem with a typically prodigious stat line: 21 points, 12 rebounds, seven blocks, five steals and two assists. Taylor recently committed to Kutztown University.

Tyreese Watson, Bonner-Prendergast: The senior guard became the face of a revamped Friars team, turning the page from a run to the 2019 PIAA Class 4A final and a star-studded era led by Isaiah Wong and Tariq Ingraham. Watson took the helm of a team much different than those star-laden versions but no less impressive. As the primary ball-handler, Watson made the guard-heavy bevy of options around him hum. He led the Friars in scoring at 17.5 points per game on the way to a 20-5 record. He averaged 5.9 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game and made 28 3-pointers (third-most on the team) at a 45.2 percent clip. The Friars finished fourth in the Catholic League, won the District 12 Class 4A title by beating Imhotep Charter and won their two states games (before the PIAA tournament was canceled) by an average of 36 points. Watson scored in double figures in all but one game. He tallied 31 points in a pasting of Conwell-Egan in December, one of 10 games of 20 or more points. He added 25 points in a 53-47 win over La Salle and 20 in the overtime victory over Cardinal O’Hara. Watson’s final game was a 27-point, five-steal outing against Valley View. The All-Catholic League first-teamer is fielding low Division I and Division II prospective suitors.

READ: The full list of All-Delco boys basketball honorees 

Carl Schaller, Garnet Valley: The junior point guard was a steadying presence during the Jaguars’ historic season, winning 23 games and making the PIAA tournament for the first time in 23 years. The Jags went 14-2 to claim the Central League regular-season title, compiled a 17-game winning streak and started the season 20-1 to earn the second seed in District 1 Class 6A before a blip in the postseason while Schaller was coping with an injury. Schaller provided continuity for the Jags, who had all but two regulars miss time during the season, including their top returning scorer from 2018-19, Neel Beniwal. Schaller averaged a team-high 18.6 points plus 4.6 assists and 3.2 rebounds per game. He scored at least nine points in each outing (save for the regular-season finale he missed due to injury). He tallied 31 points in a December win over Bishop Shanahan and tossed in 30 in a 55-50 overtime loss to Downingtown East in the District 1 Class 6A second round. Schaller hit a team-high 56 3-pointers for a squad that connected on 256 triples. Schaller was voted the Central League Player of the Year by league coaches. He’s the first Jaguar named All-Delco since Joel Smith in 1997-98.

Haverford’s John Seidman blocks a shot by Penncrest’s Aidan Carroll in the second half of the Fords’ 49-40 victory in the Central League boys basketball championship game Tuesday night. (Pete Bannan/MediaNews Group)

Alex Capitano, Episcopal Academy: The senior guard and Colgate signee was one of the most talented players in the Inter-Ac League. Even as the Churchmen struggled through a 13-15 season marred by injuries and youth, Capitano managed to shine. He averaged 17.7 points per game and hit 51 3-pointers in 23 games. Excluding a December game in which he got hurt, leading to a five-game absence, Capitano averaged 18.4 points on the season. He accounted for 31.6 percent of the Churchmen’s points in games that he played, and EA went 0-5 without him. Capitano returned with a 33-point outburst against Peddie School in the Mercer Tournament and helped EA halt a six-game losing streak two games later with 40 points in outlasting Western Reserve of Ohio. Capitano averaged 19.0 points in 10 Inter-Ac games, EA splitting the slate with a 5-5 mark, and earned a spot on the all-league first team. He scored 20 points in a 46-34 win over Haverford School in January and tallied 24 to beat Penn Charter in February. Capitano, who spent two years at Great Valley and reclassified to 2020 for three seasons at Episcopal Academy, score more than 1,500 points in high school, including 1,132 in three seasons with EA.

John Seidman, Haverford: In the span of two weeks, the junior guard’s value to the Fords was shown in both its positive and negative forms. Seidman willed the Fords to a stunning midseason turnaround, going from a 6-8 record in early January to rattling off 11 straight wins to capture the Central League title for the first time in 50 years. But when Seidman was injured in the District 1 Class 6A second round against Chester, the Fords lost by 20 points and fell in playbacks without Seidman in the lineup. The All-Central selection was Haverford’s only double-figures scorer at 15.9 points per game. The next highest scorer checked in at 7.0 ppg. He accounted for more than a third of the team’s 46.0 points per game (34.6 percent) and was second on the team with 32 3-pointers despite turning into more of a facilitator, occupying a unique role as Haverford’s best ball-handler, off-ball shooter and defender. Seidman averaged 6.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. He scored 30 points in a win over West Catholic in December, one of eight games of 20 or more points and one of five where he accounted for at least half of the Fords’ points in a game. He scored 18 points in the Central League quarterfinals against Radnor, 19 (of the Fords’ 36) in upsetting top seed Garnet Valley in the semifinals, and though he scored just four points in the finals victory over Penncrest, he was the best player on the court with nine rebounds, three assists and a smothering defensive outing. Seidman is the first Ford on the All-Delco first team since Jim McMahon in 2001-02.

Comments

comments

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

12 + fourteen =

Advertisement

Recent News

Advertisement
Advertisement

More in Winter Sports