Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Jocelyn Rowley
Sports@lhvc.com 

Adam Strah named Niwot baseball head coach

 


Long-time varsity assistant Adam Strah has been named the new head baseball coach at Niwot, replacing Craig McBride, who resigned following the 2017 season. Strah, who has been with the team for the past six seasons, will also join Niwot High School’s faculty as physical education/health teacher.

The promotion marks Strah’s return to the head coaching ranks. Before coming to Niwot, he held the top spot at Rampart High in Colorado Springs, where he amassed a career record of 73-30-1, including a state final four appearance in 2009. That same year, he was named 5A coach of the year by the Denver Post.

“We are thrilled to have Adam on board,” said NHS athletic director Chase McBride following the announcement of the hire. “His baseball knowledge and ability to build relationships with students is above all else. We are beyond lucky to have him on our coaching staff and leading our baseball program.”

Strah completed his baseball playing career at Azusa Pacific University in Los Angeles, where he also obtained a degree in physical education. Lured by two former college roommates, Strah made his way to Colorado Springs in 2005 following a coaching stint at Walnut High School in Walnut, California.

After leaving Rampart, Strah came to the Niwot area with with his new wife, Brooke Faulkner Strah, who is “Boulder born and raised.” Her parents, Marc and Sherry Faulkner, owned and operated Rev. Taylor’s Restaurant in Niwot from 1985 to 2000. Adam Strah accepted the PE teaching job at Niwot Elementary, and joined McBride’s staff, hoping to stay long term in the community he called a “perfect fit.” Today, he lives in Longmont with Brooke and their two daughters Emerson (3) and Mercy (1).

For his part, Strah is happy to be able to remain in the community he’s called home since 2011, especially since it means a return to teaching high school. “Right away I knew that that was something I wanted to step into,” he said of his reaction to McBride’s resignation. “Being in the Niwot community is where I’ve always wanted to be. It all just kind of came together to step back into both positions at the same time.”

“The six years at the elementary school were great, but I’m excited to get back to the culture of a high school,” he continued. “It’s not just the athletics, but the plays and the concerts, and the rallies. I’m also really looking forward to being in touch with the athletes on a daily basis.”

Strah is inheriting a program that has struggled to replicate the success of the championship teams from the late 1990s and early 2000s. During his six seasons as an assistant, the Cougars had a winning record just once, in 2014 when they went 21-5 and advanced to the Class 4A state finals before losing the championship game. In 2017, the Cougars were 7-12 overall, and missed the playoffs for the second time in three years. Despite this, Strah said that he doesn’t foresee making a lot of tangible changes to the program in the near term.

“There’s no plans to change the staff,” he explained. “Everybody has been together so long now, it’s a really, really good situation.”

In fact, he said that helming a program with such a storied history eases some of the pressure of being a new head coach.

“It’s a great situation for me to be able to continue so much, and not feel like I have to establish new norms and a new culture,” he said. “As time goes on there will be some differences, but I really look at it as continuing our traditions.”

One of those traditions he hopes to return to is winning playoff games, and for that, Strah said he hopes to recapture some magic from the 2014 state title run.

“We’ve got a couple of the kids from that team coaching with us and I think that is a huge help,” he said. “That team raised the bar for the program with their effort and their energy, and the current kids hear what the standard was from those kids, not just the coaches.”

 

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