Archmere Football Takes the State Championship against Woodbridge with a Shutout!


The team poses with the trophy, coaches, trainers, and several of the people who made this win possible by working behind the scenes. Photo credits go to Don Blake.

Grace Koch, News Editor

Archmere football fought through their undefeated season, making quick work of the playoffs, all building up to the state championship at the University of Delaware where the Archmere Auks shut out the Woodbridge Raiders 27-0. 

On December 11, 2021, devoted fans, including students, parents, future Auks, and alumni packed the UD stands as the team dominated the game. Green pom-poms, towles, kazoos, and body paint were excitedly distributed through the stands. The standout supporters even painted “GO AUKS” on their stomachs and braved the wet, cold weather without shirts to show their support for the team. 

Though the Auks had an unsuccessful first drive, the game quickly picked up speed. Senior Declan Pearson weaved through Woodbridge’s defense to score the first touchdown of the game, and junior Chris Albero kicked a successful extra point. Soon after, the Auks defense forced the Raiders to punt, leading to a successful block by sophomore Cole Fenice. Pearson again snuck through the Raiders’ defense, awarding the Auks a 13-0 lead by the end of the first quarter.

Archmere’s offense was on fire throughout the entire game. In the third quarter, quarterback Chris Albero seamlessly executed a handoff on a miss-direction to Johnny Kim, who ran an impressive 81 yards, scoring yet another touchdown. The Auks increased their lead to 20-0 after Albero kicked the extra point. 

In the final quarter, quarterback Chris Albero ran in a six-yard keeper, then kicked for the extra point, earning Archmere Academy Football its first D2 football championship title. After standing the whole game, screaming, the Archmere students began jumping, hugging, and even crying after this last touchdown solidified Archmere’s win.  

Senior defenseman Kevin DiGregorio definitively commented, “When we play our game, no one can run on us,” and that proved true. While the Auks offense ran an impressive line, Archmere’s defense held their ground, not allowing Woodbridge’s offense any room to score. During the first quarter, the Auks limited the Raiders to an impressive 39 yards and only let up 150 yards total. 

After the exciting victory, students lined up by the field, creating a tunnel through which the team ran a victory lap. The players grinned from ear to ear after senior Thomas Pinto soaked head coach John Bellace with the icy water jug. Students and parents alike bought state championship shirts, hoodies, and pants while the team took celebratory photos. 

Though it was the guys that put in the work, the whole Archmere community felt like it was their victory too. The Archmere football team is not only devoted to their sport, but to the community as a whole. “It’s [winning that’s] the best feeling in the world. We do it for Archmere. I’m proud to be an Archmere student, proud to be here, proud to win this,” regarded DiGregorio. 

Archmere held an assembly to celebrate the team’s win featuring a performance from Archmere’s cheer team and speeches from principal Thiel, former principal and coach Paul Pomeroy, and coach Bellace, along with team captains Kevin DiGregorio and Kieran Udovich. The highlight of the assembly was a video from President Biden, congratulating his former alma mater on their victory and formally extending an invitation for the entire team to the White House.