Westminster Christian Academy volleyball player Mitch Penning is starting is senior year Wednesday and is set to graduate in 2013.
However, there is potentially much more to the teen's future.
A recent profile of Penning spotlights him as a possible future olympian. KSDK's Katie Felts recent feature story on the Town and Country student highlights his ability on the volleyball court and and suggests he could be "this area's next Olympian."
He's already a middle blocker on the U.S. Youth National Team, according to his coach at Westminster Jean Evans.
Evans, who coached USA Volleyball this summer, said Penning was named First Team All-State and First Team All Metro for 2012 Boys volleyball season and plays club for High Performance STL, one of the top Boys volleyball Clubs in the nation. He also attended Boys Youth Volleyball Camp in Anaheim in Dec 2011.
Westminster staff tells Patch that Pennington is considering several top volleyball schools for college, including Pepperdine, UCLA, Ohio State, and others.
"Mitch sees every opportunity to play as an opportunity to improve, whether he is working out with the Youth National team, his high school team, or just hanging out the gym. Mitch is always the first person to volunteer when it comes to helping out younger players, and has spent hundreds of hours working with grades school kids at his Club. He works out regularly with a trainer, and is 100% committed to becoming the best player that he can. He says he would, "Be honored to play in the Olympics someday," Evans stated in an email.
Mitch's girlfriend, Lydia Ely, is also reportedly a "standout volleyball player" who graduated Rosati Kain this spring. She is reportedly continuing her volleyball career at Mizzou this Fall.