Senior standouts lead Gaels to stellar season

Seniors Robert Quevedo, Nico Marini, Matt Mojica, Brandon Acervida, Mike Kiwak and Jack Gangi led coach LeAnne Bianchine's Gaels to a 12-4 season.

Seniors Robert Quevedo, Nico Marini, Matt Mojica, Brandon Acervida, Mike Kiwak and Jack Gangi led coach LeAnne Bianchine’s Gaels to a 12-4 season.

Shelton High Athletics / Contributed photo

Brandon Acervida and Jack Gangi led the Shelton boys’ volleyball team to a 12-4 regular season and a berth in the Southern Connecticut Conference semifinals.

The pair of All-Staters led a group of six classmates. Each was first team All-SCC and made the SCC All-Academic team.

“Brandon has been a spectacular student athlete,” Shelton coach LeAnne Bianchine said. “He’s a true leader with great ambition. He constantly hyped up the team, the crowd, and me. Brandon’s passion and drive on the court and off is highly infectious. He has been an outstanding leader, teammate, student athlete and friend to all.

“Jack was a tremendous force for us this season,” Bianchine said. “He was laser focused at practices and games. He brought the level of play up every time he stepped on the court. Jack’s ambition is catching and quite admirable.”

Robert Quevedo and Mike Kiwak were selected second team All-SCC.

“Rob was SCC Scholar Athlete of the Year,” Bianchine said. “He’s the epitome of what a student athlete at Shelton High should be. Rob is highly motivated and extremely hard working. He’s not one to look for praise, but is certainly deserving of it all.

“Mike has an unbelievable work ethic,” his coach said. “He constantly pushes himself to strive to be the best. And because he has such a drive the younger guys have adopted this from him. Mike has a way of getting the job done without all the fanfare.”

Nico Marini was a member of the SCC All Academic team and honorable mention as a player.

“Nico did an absolutely outstanding job as our setter this year,” Bianchine said. “He succeeded in the classroom and on the court. He was an inspiration to so many of us this season. His hard work and dedication will continue to set the standard of Shelton athletics.”

Bianchine sees a coaching future for Matt Mojica.

“Matt’s pure enthusiasm and upbeat personality has a great deal to do with our success. He is a coach in waiting,” she said. “He never let one player get down ever. When on the court he never stopped moving.”

John Sabovik and Alex Mallozzi will captain the Gaels next season.

william.bloxsom@hearstmediact.com Twitter: @blox354