After winning a state title last year, the Columbus St. Francis DeSales lacrosse team is off to a good start this season. One of the players to watch for the Stallions is junior midfielder Mason Rickens. “The season is going well so far. Right now we are 8-6 on the year. We have certainly had our ups and downs as a team dealing with injuries and such, but I’m extremely proud to be a part of this team because we have grown together through the adversity,” Rickens said.
Rickens is a midfielder for the Stallions and says that the position is the right fit for him. “It’s awesome being a midfielder,” Rickens mentioned. “It’s definitely the spot for me. I feel my biggest strengths in the game are speed and quickness. Midfield is the best spot for me to take advantage of those. As a middle, I generally have more space to dodge than an attackman would. With that added space, I’m better equipped to use my speed to get past my defender, and either shoot or move it to an open teammate,” Rickens added.
Rickens was young when he started to play lacrosse. “I started lacrosse back in second grade. A couple of second graders and I got to play with the 3rd and 4th-grade team, so that was a great opportunity to start to learn the game and play with kids who had already had some experience,” Rickens stated.
To mentally prepare for a game, Rickens watches movie clips from the movie Gladiator which is his all-time favorite movie and says it helps him get ready for the big game. “I take some time to close my eyes and visualize myself succeeding, like scoring a goal or making a great pass. Then as I’m getting my equipment on, I watch a clip from gladiator to get me focused,” Rickens commented.
Even though Rickens is a junior, he already knows where he will be playing his college lacrosse as he committed to Rutgers. Rickens said that the coaching staff was the reason that he committed to the Scarlet Knights. “I loved the coaching staff there. The Vibe I got from them was awesome. They made me feel very welcome and were very accommodating. Also, Rutgers lacrosse has a network of connections on Wall Street, which is where I dream of working after school,” Rickens said.
Lacrosse has taught Rickens a lot and says they are lessons that he will use for the rest of his life. “Lacrosse has taught me work ethic, like how you have to grind to succeed at anything in life. In addition, it has taught me how to be a good teammate and what it’s like to be part of something greater than yourself,” Rickens stated.