When Mitch Modin was younger, all he dreamed about was becoming a professional basketball player. Now, his dreams have shifted, as he hopes to someday become a professional decathlete.
"It was just something I've wanted for a while, so we just went out and gave it a shot and qualified for (Junior Olympic) regionals and regionals," said Mountain View's Mitch Modin. "I did pretty well, so we went on to nationals."
Nationals was only his third-ever decathlon, and he ended up taking third.
And like any track athlete in Bend, Mitch looks up to decathlon world-record holder Ashton Eaton. He first met him when he was 8 years old, preparing for a track tournament.
"Mitch got to be tutored by Ashton at that time for starts, and then he ran the track lap with Ashton -- and from that time, on he's looked up to him," said Mitch's mother, Mandy Modin.
Mitch said, "Knowing that he (Ashton) still knows his roots, and he's not afraid to talk to kids like me or come back to Bend makes him that much greater of an athlete."
After early success in the decathlon, the senior-to-be at Mountain View still has goals to accomplish in his final season as a Cougar, namely breaking Ashton's school records.
"I'd love to beat those -- no offense to Ashton. I want to beat his long jump record and a couple other sprint records," Mitch said. "Winning state is also one of my high goals, so if I could win state in the 200 (meters) or long jump, that'd be great too."
So the biggest question is, what's in the water at Mountain View that produces such good decathletes like Ashton and Mitch?
"I guess we just have great coaches, because Tate Metcalf and Dave Hood all throw everything together to make you love track," Mitch said.
His mom agrees: "I think it's just the support they get from everybody, mainly their Mountain View coaches, but everybody's jumped in."
The first time Mitch tried the decathlon, he had never competed in five of the 10 events. Now, he's on his way to following in Ashton Eaton's footsteps.