ZILLAH — Nearly a year after transferring from Cashmere to Zillah, Mason Landdeck announced on social media last Friday that he was moving to St. George, Utah and transferring to Desert Hills High School for his senior year.
Desert Hills (4A) will be the fourth school Landdeck has played for in the past four years, including Kittitas — where he won the 2018 2B state basketball championship — Cashmere and Zillah.
The two-time first team all-state selection, who averaged more than 30 points per game with the Bulldogs as a sophomore and holds offers from Eastern Washington, Bryant University and Point Loma Nazarene cited concerns about COVID-19 and the growing uncertainty surrounding a winter prep season in Washington.
Landdeck led Zillah in scoring last year and was named South Central Athletic Conference MVP. Zillah finished just behind Cashmere in the RPI rankings but got knocked out of the state tournament after losing to Lynden Christian and Kings.
A handful of the states’ top basketball players, including Nolan Hickman (Eastside Catholic) — the No. 2 ranked basketball player in the state — Haley Huard (Eastlake), Macey Huard (Bear Creek), Mjracle Sheppard (Eastside Catholic) and Ethan Copeland (Sunnyside) have all moved out of Washington in hopes of playing a senior season.
Former Wenatchee QB Camden Sirmon moved to Missoula, Montana weeks ago, citing similar concerns.
With the prospect of a prep season looking ominous at this point, there likely will be more athletes and families considering the same option.