A local volleyball player is about to receive some training in an elite program.
Parker Owens was selected to attend the USA Volleyball Boys’ Future Select Training Program in Vernon Hills, Ill., July 10-14.
The rising sixth grader at Hanahan Middle School is one of only 49 boys in the age group who were selected to attend from across the United States and the lone selection from South Carolina.
He’s also rare in that he overcomes the challenge of Type I diabetes. Owens was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 2 and wears an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor to help maintain his blood sugars, even during multi-day volleyball tournaments.
Inspired by former USA Volleyball gold medalist Kevin Hansen, Owens hasn’t let diabetes hold him back from any competition. Hansen was on the 2008 Summer Olympics team in Beijing and was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was 10.
Owens plays on the only boys indoor volleyball team in the Charleston Area, the Palmetto Strikers Volleyball Club (13U boys team). This year he was named a Palmetto all-region player. He began playing travel volleyball at 8.
Owens is from a volleyball family. Mother Kelly Owens was an all-conference player at Middleton High School in Charleston and played at Mars Hill College in North Carolina. She was previously a high school coach at Middleton and a high school league official and now coaches his travel team at Palmetto Strikers. Father Dan Owens was a club player and coaches also a girls’ travel team at Palmetto Strikers. Older sister Marley plays for Hanahan High School.
The training he will receive from the USA Volleyball national coaches at the training camp will help him to improve his game and compete at higher levels.
The program is an elite training program available to high potential young volleyball players as an opportunity to advance in the U.S. National Team pipeline.