May 23, 2022

Montverde Academy (Fla.) Senior Forward and Duke Commit Darik Whitehead and Sidwell Friends School (Washington DC) Guard Kiki Rice has been named the 2022 Jersey Mike’s Nicemith High School Player of the Year.

Whitehead helped Montverde – ranked sixth in the USA TODAY Sports Super 25 – to record 21-4 regular-season with 17.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 0.6 steels and 0.2 blocks per game. He won the award as a fourth Montverde player along with RJ Barrett, Ked Cunningham and Ben Simmons.

“I feel humbled and honored to receive the Jersey Mike Nicemith Award as the fourth Monteverde Academy player in the last eight years,” Whitehead said in a release. “I would like to thank Coach Boyle and my teammates, as well as the rest of my coaches, as well as Dr. Casey Kesslering and the rest of the Montverde Academy community for helping make this happen.”

Rice, a UCLA pledge, averaged 16 points, 7.6 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 2.8 steals per game this season. He is the first McDonald’s All-American in the history of the Sidwell Friends School program.

“It’s a dream come true,” Rice said. “I am very honored to be recognized by the selection committee from a group of finalists with the Jersey Mike’s Nicemith Trophy and I personally know him as an outstanding player. I am grateful to my family, teammates and coaches because I know for sure that this would not have been possible without them. “

The Jersey Mike’s Nicemith High School Trophy for Player of the Year was first presented in 1987. The winners were selected by a group of basketball journalists from across the country who formed the Nicemith Award National High School Voting Academy.

“In a highly competitive and exciting basketball season, Kiki and Darik were the most outstanding players in the country and incredibly worthy of being honored at the Jersey Mike’s Nicemith High School Trophy as the Player of the Year,” said Eric O’Brien, Executive Director, Atlanta Tiff Club. “They have both proven to be exceptional basketball players, and we wish them the best of luck as they continue their careers to the next level.”

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