Greenwood senior Beck Pennington’s stock rose significantly after winning the KHSAA State Tennis Championship last season, and that surge culminated this week as Pennington signed his letter of intent to play for the University of Kentucky.
Pennington celebrated his signing Thursday in the GHS auditorium after sending off the official papers earlier in the week.
“There was a lot of pressure on me over the last couple of weeks,” Pennington said. “I was talking to a lot of coaches, and I’m just glad I got it over with. Coach (Dennis) Emery there has been there for 20-plus years and really done a great job. I’m just looking forward to playing for the Cats.”
Pennington said he ultimately chose Kentucky over Louisville, citing his lifelong love for the Wildcats as one reason for his choice.
“I’ve always been a UK fan,” he said. “My dad went to UK, I love UK basketball. I love that school and Lexington. It was pretty close, but Kentucky had that edge.”
Pennington beat St. Xavier’s Alex Gornet for the state title in May. He’s currently ranked the top high school player in the state by tennisrecruiting.net, as well as the 15th-best player in the Southeast region.
The recruiting site has Pennington tabbed as the 53rd best player in the nation heading into his senior season.
“I’ve still got to work hard,” he said. “Just because I signed doesn’t mean I can lay off. I’ve probably got to work even harder.”