Salute To Seniors: Elijah Mason

Name: Elijah Mason

School: Desert Vista HS

In the course of a year, Elijah progressed in the Discus from a lifetime best of 192-03 to 212-11. He was one of only two throwers in the State (Turner Washington) to break the 200-foot barrier. He finished his season at the Great Southwest Outdoor Classic with another lifetime best of 63-01.5 in the Shot Put. Elijah gives all glory to God, and credits his Coach Troy Hickel and his son Torrey for fellowshipping him in the Thunder program. His greatest inspiration is his mother for teaching him the value of hard work.

Q: What was your most memorable throw?

A: My most memorable throw was at the Arcadia Invitational when I threw 212-11 which tied the 2nd all-time AZ Discus mark and put me 5th all-time on the Arcadia Invite furthest marks.

Q: Who would you consider your biggest competition over your four years?

A: My biggest competition over my four years is split between two of my close friends Torrey Hickel, and Turner Washington. Seeing Torrey every day in practice pushed me to work harder and study my craft more than ever and throwing against Turner will be something I will not ever be able to forget. Seeing my name in the top 5, nationally along with him, while also be good friends is just crazy.

Q: What was your greatest accomplishment?

A: My greatest accomplishment is being a 3-time State Discus Champion and 1-time State Shot put champion over my four years.

Q: If you could do it all over again what would you change about your running career in high school?

A: If I could do it all over again I would not change a thing. Being where I am in life is a visual representation of how God's plan is nothing but a blessing.

Q: What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?

A: My most difficult obstacle throughout my HS career was injuring my hand sophomore year throwing Shot Put and it never getting much better. Having to modify tons of workouts and barely practicing shot was tough and I would start to wonder how I will get any better when I couldn't practice that event.

Q: What will you miss the most?

A: I will miss my coaches the most. At Desert Vista, it really is a family atmosphere that nobody takes for granted. To have coaches that treat you as if you were their own children is special and without them I would not be anywhere near where I am today.

Q: What advice would you give to younger athletes?

A: To the younger athletes I would say to just keep working hard and if your school does not have a throws coach there are a lot of great coaches around the environment especially with Arete Throws, I never worked with them but they are producing some of the state's best throwers and their clinics are getting lots of attention from California to Texas.

Q: What influence has your coach had with respect to your performance and overall life goals?

A: My coaches along the entire team have helped me out tremendously in regards of me becoming the young man I am today, but specifically Coach Hickel and Coach France will forever be two of the greatest mentors I'll have. From the countless hours of practice to the after-practice lunches at Rudy's they have pushed/shaped me into the thrower/young man I am today.

Q: What are your college plans?

A: My college plans are to throw at the University of Washington and pursue either a B.S. or M.S. in Materials Science Engineering for five years.

Q: Who would you like to say 'thank you' to?

A: First ALL GLORY TO GOD. I would like to thank my family, coaches, teachers, and friends who have always been there for me during this journey but specifically I'd like to thank my mother. Without her I literally would have nothing in life. She is the hardest worker I have ever met and has done nothing but support me and guide me throughout my life. From our daily commute from Casa Grande to Ahwatukee so I can attend a great school to our late night Uno games at the table she is always making me happy and handing down her knowledge to me. She is my world and the strongest person I know. I love you Mom.