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Storm Mason has been working with the Williamstown basketball team this summer, preparing for his final year wearing the orange and black of the Demons.
While he has been focused on the Demons, Mason has also been preparing for a trip to Austria, as part of the People to People sports ambassador program.
“Apparently a coach or a teacher knew about the program and sent in a letter about me,” Mason said. “I think it was my coach that actually did it. My parents and I went to a meeting and checked it out. My parents said, ‘Let’s do it.’”
Coach Stacey May, Williamstown’s head coach, did nominate Mason for the program, beliveing that Mason would take advantage of the opportunity.
“Storm’s a great person,” May said. “It’s a great opportunity for him and he’s one of the players I thought would participate. I think this will be an expereince that he will remember for his life. Not everyone can say they’ve done what he’s going to do.”
Mason will travel to Austria, leaving on July 4 and staying overseas for 11 days. Mason will work with and against players from across the country. He hopes the experience will help him as he prepares for his senior year as a leader on the Williamstown basketball team.
“It’s going to be exhilarating,” Mason said. “I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of ball they play and what kind of ball I’ll be playing. I’m going to play with boys from Chicago and New York, so I’ll get to see how they play, which will be cool. We’ll be able to work together.”
Another perk of the trip is that Mason will be coached by Rollie Massimino. Massimino is the current head basketball coach at Northwood University in Florida, but also led Villanova to a national championship over Patrick Ewing and the Georgetown Hoyas in 1985.
“I want to learn from him because I figure I can learn a lot,” Mason said. “I get to bring back what I’ll learn and show it on the court next year. I think I’ll learn and it will help me grow as a player. I want to sit down and talk to him. It’s something that I’ll tell my kids about. They won’t know who he is, but it will still be cool.”
When Mason first found out about the program, he didn’t believe it was for him, but once he learned more about the program he was excited for the opportunity.
“At the meetings I’ve gone to, they always say that sportsmanship is a real big thing that people look at and I think I play with good sportsmanship just about every game,” Mason said. I’m grateful that my parents are doing this for me. I hope they know that I appreciate it because it is big. I’m going to be taking this experience to the dinner table for a while.”
Mason is looking forward to trying the food and seeing the city of Vienna. He is the son of Tim and Sherry Mason of Williamstown.
The Mason family is selling tickets for University of Kentucky and University of Louisville memorabilia to raise money for Mason. Tickets are $1 each or six tickets for $5. Tickets are available at the Edwardo’s Pizza and Subs in Williamstown. The drawing is July 3. Donations would also be appreciated.