WEST SENECA, N.Y. (WIVB) - It was a big day across the pond for a local Olympian.
Western New York native Matt Anderson led the U.S. Men's Volleyball team in points as they defeated Serbia in their first game of the 2012 games.
Wild Cheers rang out in London and closer to home, in West Seneca where Anderson's family watched score more points than any other player in the game to lead Team USA to victory.
"I am so happy and proud to be his mother," said Nancy Anderson. "It's just wonderful."
Anderson's sister Joelle Vanegas said she couldn't how proud she felt watching her brother as an Olympian.[
"It's an amazing feeling," she said. "To look up at the TV--like at the Opening Ceremonies when they said, '531 Olympians,' and my brother was one of those."
It is especially amazing when you find out Anderson has only been playing volleyball for ten years.
Anderson struggled with his first choice of basketball until mentors convinced him to start playing club in high school.
From there, it was a meteoric rise to the mens championship team at Penn State, and ultimately, on to the pros.
"To be that good, that quick, is amazing." said mentors Joanne and Gary Capage. "It's a dream. And I know he's living the dream--that's the great part of it."
Anderson's first Olympic win is bittersweet, coming two years after his biggest mentor, his dad, passed away.
"He was definitely the one that instilled, 'You do your work. You do your work, and everything will come around.'" Said Anderson's mother, speaking of his father. "Mike was the best guy. Someone for the kids to look up to."
Anderson still looks up to his dad. And the family senses Michael Anderson was looking down with a smile, at the moment of victory.
Anderson and the rest of Team USA have one day off. They will be back in action Tuesday against Team Germany.
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