By Brian Jerzak
There never has been much doubt in the mind of St. Michael-Albertville wrestler Mitchell McKee. He had a pretty good idea what he wanted to do at a young age. Most kids have an idea of what they want to do when they get older, but few have the talent and drive of a guy like McKee. From the day he invited his friend over for a play date in kindergarten, Mitchell McKee knew he wanted to be a wrestler.
McKee’s goals are much higher now than they were when he invited his friend over for a weekend play date, but big goals always have to start small.
“I invited (Mound Westonka senior) Lee Schmalz over, but his dad said he had a wrestling tournament first,” recalled McKee. “He came over afterward and he brought his trophy with him. Once I saw the trophy I knew I wanted to wrestle. I started that next Tuesday.”
When he had success at his first national tournaments, McKee knew he had a chance to get to an elite level. Watching others succeed heightened his drive.
“I started watching all the Division I championships and when Jake Deitchler was an Olympian I wanted to do that. Just seeing it first hand – as a wrestler – I wanted to do the same thing.”