When Forest Park junior guard Breyana Mason arrived at Dulles Airport last Sunday after her Fairfax Stars had lost in the Nike Nationals championship in South Carolina, she tried to access a story about the game on her phone.
In the process, she ran across a link for an all-tournament team, an honor squad she did not know would be chosen. She clicked. Her name was on it.
“It was pretty shocking,” she said.
And just like that, by virtue of her tournament performance and all-around steady summer, Mason has vaulted into the upper echelon of 2013 recruits, making her perhaps the most sought Prince William County girls’ basketball prospect since Monica Wright (Virginia, now with the Minnesota Lynx of the WNBA) and Lynetta Kizer (Maryland).
How knee-buckling was the rise? The other 10 players chosen to the first and second all-tournament teams all had evaluations on file on the ESPN women’s basketball recruiting Web site. Mason did not.
“This type of honor takes her recruiting to the national level,” Forest Park Coach Rebecca Tillett said. “My phone’s been going crazy. She’s receiving interest at the highest possible level.”
“It’s pretty intense,” said Mason, who went on an unofficial visit Wednesday to a school that she declined to name. “My confidence level has raised a little bit higher now just knowing that I’m capable of certain things. I always saw myself in that light, but I never was sure if it was going to happen or how soon it was going to happen. But I always kind of thought I had the potential to go to a top program.”
The Stars lost the championship game to a team from the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The 5-foot-8 Mason scored 21 points in a semifinal victory over a Florida team.
Mason, with a grade-point average over 4.0 and an interest in studying sports medicine, already had a Big East offer from a school that she declined to name. More Big East and ACC schools are among those now more actively recruiting her, Mason said.
Mason averaged 14.9 points last season for Forest Park, which lost to eventual state champion Princess Anne in the Virginia AAA semifinals to finish 24-4. She scored 21 points in a state quarterfinal victory over Thomas Dale.
Many schools project Mason as a point guard, but she believes she has the skills to play anywhere in the back court. Despite entering her junior year, Mason might make a college decision as soon as in the next month or two.
“I don’t want to wait around,” she said. “Things could happen. Injuries. I just want to get the process over with as soon as possible. Make a decision and stick with that decision and start a relationship with the school I choose.”