GBB Player of the Year

A true Mountie superstar

Southmont’s DeLorean Mason repeats as JR Girls Basketball Player of the Year


Southmont’s DeLorean Mason broke onto the scene a season ago for the Mountie girls basketball team. After a season where she averaged 13.7 points per game and a staggering 6.2 steals per game in her junior year, Mason saved her best season for her last this winter. The senior guard upped her scoring to 16.4 points per game while still averaging 5.3 steals per game. Both of those averages were good enough to lead the Sagamore Conference.

Not only did Mason get better, but the Mounties as a team did as well. South’s 14-9 record was their most wins since they won 14 back in 2013-14. South also finished third in the SAC with a 4-3 record.

“Getting to this season and the success I had wasn’t something that happened overnight,” Mason said. “It involved a ton of work in the gym to improve my scoring and getting up hundreds and hundreds of shots. Coach (Burkman) was there with me almost every day working with me on my three-point shot. That’s the thing that I’ve seen come a really long way.”

Not only does Mason’s points per game stat’s back up the work she put in to get ready for her senior season, but her percentages across the board were career-highs as well. Mason shot 34% from long range this past year, up from 24% her junior year. Her free-throw percentage rose from 66% to 75% while another impressive stat for the Mountie senior was she cut her turnovers down from 5.2 to 3.6.

“I use DeLo all the time as an example when I’m talking to our younger girls,” Southmont coach Dan Burkman said of his superstar. “Some people come watch her play and they think it’s all natural. The amount of time she’s spent in our gym is amazing. I’m hoping her drive and her work ethic has rubbed off on some of our younger girls. Players like DeLo don’t come around very often and she’s set a great example for our program.”

With her career ending on a high note and the leader that she was for the Mounties both on and off the court, Mason for the second straight season is the 2023-24 Journal Review Girls Basketball Player of the Year.

Mason and the Mounties can say they played their best game of the season in their last one of the season. Back in the sectional semi-final against heavily favored and eventual sectional champion Parke Heritage, Southmont went toe-to-toe with the Wolves but fell just short in a 65-61 loss.  The game was a highly entertaining girls basketball game between the best two teams in the sectional. While the Mounties fell short, it was a performance that had them holding their heads high. Mason ends her Mountie career with 828 career points and a very impressive 328 steals which shattered the previous school record for Southmont.

“This season was amazing,” Mason said of her last of her high school career. “This group of seniors that I got to go out with was special because we’ve all been playing together for so long. Those girls were my second family while out there on the court and we just all connected with each other.”

While Mason is done putting on a Southmont uniform, she isn’t quite done with her basketball career. The interest from college coaches has been very high with Mason and while she is still deciding on where she would like to play, Burkman notes whoever is fortunate enough to land her, will be getting a special player.

“There’s no way to explain to coaches what they’re getting in her,” Burkman said. “She’s just such a great kid, a gym rat, and of course she puts in the work. Something that doesn’t get talked about much with her is how great of a teammate she was. She didn’t come out of the game very much but when she did, she was always cheering on our sideline and was the first to compliment someone. You combine all of those things and you have yourself a pretty great player. I know she’s going to go on to do great things.”

It’s no secret that DeLo will go down in school history as one of the better players to come through the program. What she wants to be remembered for more than anything however is bigger than any accolade or individual achievement.

“I want people to know the amount of work and the hundreds of hours that no one saw,” she said. “You can’t come in and just have it easy and expect to have success without putting in the work. I hope that I set that goal and expectation for future players who come through South.”

DeLo has left her mark with the Mounties and whatever the future holds for the Mountie star, it’s safe to probably say it’s a bright one.