Favorite athlete: Rafael Nadal
Favorite team: Phillies
Favorite memory competing in sports: Winning the state quarterfinal match against Manheim Township and moving into the semifinal
Most embarrassing/funniest thing that has happened while competing in sports: During the third set tiebreaker of my singles match against CR North last year, a groundhog ran onto my court!
Music on iPod: Demi Lovato, Young the Giant, Ed Sheeran
Future plans: Attend a top college, graduate and go to medical school
Words to live by: ‘The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the impossible.’ –Arthur C. Clarke
One goal before turning 30: Have a family
One thing people don’t know about me: I love playing ping-pong, and I’m actually pretty good at it.
That one word describes Danielle Mustin’s tennis game and, perhaps, the way she approaches life. Not only does the Wissahickon High School senior excel on the tennis court, but she shines in the classroom as well.
“She’s an excellent student athlete, in that order,” said Mary Ellen Devlin, her coach at Wissahickon. “She’s been a pillar of our team for all four years. She’s been a steady force. She’s a pleasure to coach.”
The Trojans have made the state tournament every year that Mustin has been part of the team, and they have high hopes again this season. They have won the conference each of the last three years, won a district title, been district runner-up and reached both a state quarterfinal and a state semi.
Mustin garnered First Team Suburban One League honors, won the SOL American Conference crown and finished in the top three at districts last year.
“She has really developed her game — and worked hard in the offseason to develop it,” Devlin said.
Mustin, a captain, regularly plays doubles alongside Kathleen Suh, but the Trojans also employ her talents in a singles spot.
“It’s been really fun,” Mustin said. “It’s been great to be able to play on a team that’s had a lot of success. Mrs. Devlin has a lot of experience, and her daughters have been on the team and we’re all really close.”
In addition to her tennis success, Mustin captured first place in the Pennsylvania Future Business Leaders of America competition in the category of Business Procedures earlier this year.
In July, she went on to finish second in the national FBLA competition, where she was competing against 8,000 other students.
She’s also a member of the Key Club, the National Honors Society and Health Careers Club. She plans to major in biology and pre-med in college. She participated in the Pennsylvania Science Fair through the Pa. Junior Academy for Science for two years.
As if all of those activities don’t keep her busy enough, she’s a Community Advisory Council member at Dow Chemical.
Oh, and she plays the piano, too.
“She has already accomplished so much and she’s a great kid,” Devlin said.
As for tennis, Mustin isn’t sure if she’ll play in college but she wants to make her final season at Wissahickon a good one.
“I expect the team to do well,” she said. “At least I hope we do.”
In the first few weeks of this season, Wissahickon is undefeated and sitting atop the conference once again, and Mustin is a big reason why. She continues to work on her game and plays in tournaments when she can.
“I have a strong serve, and I’ve been fortunate to have some good coaching,” Mustin said. “I’ve been able to mix up my shots with slice and topspin.”
Devlin said Mustin just keeps getting better and better.
“She’s been extremely valuable for us,” Devlin said. “She has a good serve and volley, a big serve and big strokes. And she’s willing to strategize. She can calculate very quickly.
“She’s very balanced.”