Southington resident Niko Kvietkus collected some hardware for his efforts in the post-grad season at Deerfield Academy.
When the 2017 All-New England Preparatory School Athletic Council football teams were released, Kvietkus was named the Class A Lineman of the Year.
The defensive end and center helped the Big Green to a 6-3 finish.
“It was an eye-opening experience as far as academics,” Kvietkus said of his prep school experience. “Football-wise, coming from Xavier, it was a tough program and the competition was tougher week to week. Academically, I struggled for the first few weeks, but I got used to it and, hopefully, it will prepare me for college. This experience will pay off for me tenfold.”
Kvietkus is no stranger to awards. Following his senior season at Xavier last year, he was named All-SCC and All-State Class LL as a defensive end. He made the Walter Camp Second Team as an offensive lineman. He was also an All-Connecticut pick in USA Today.
This year, Kvietkus saw his share of sacks and forced and recovered fumbles.
“My best game this year was a game against Andover,” Kvietkus said. “We played it in a monsoon. Because of injury, I played nose guard. It was a new position and I played it well.
“This was the best year Deerfield has had in a while,” Kvietkus added. “We made a bowl game for the first time in 15 years.”
Kvietkus, who turns 19 on Saturday, is heading to the University of New Hampshire, a Division I FCS school in the Colonial Athletic Association. The 6-foot-3, 260-pounder committed to the school in August.
“I’m in the process to enroll at New Hampshire in January and get some time under my belt before fall camp,” Kvietkus said.
Kvietkus will study buisness in New Hampshire.
Choate’s Shane Sweitzer, of Madison, was the Class A Player of the Year. Joe Young, Noah Pope, Jovan Nenadovic and Sweitzer, a University of Pennsylvania commit, were All-NEPSAC first-teamers for Choate.
Chase Kinzly and Zachary Spencer were All-NEPSAC First Team for Cheshire Academy.