He made varsity his freshman year of high school. He averaged 18 points a game his sophomore year and 22.3 in his junior year.

Now Rock Canyon soon-to-be senior, Sam Masten's hard work is paying off after his recent commitment to the Division I program about an hour-and-a-half north at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley.

In Masten's junior year with the Jaguars, the team fought their way to a Final Four appearance only to fall by merely a point (61-60) to the eventual 5A Basketball State Champions the Eaglecrest Raptors.

Masten had a stellar last season recording 22.3 points a game, 4.1 rebounds per game, 2.8 assists per game and a 55 field goal percentage.

The Jaguars have improved as Masten has improved. The team has made the playoffs every year since his freshman year and each time they've gone just a bit further.

Now with his senior year at Rock Canyon less than a month away, the 6-foot-3 senior can live in the moment after cementing his collegiate basketball plans and focus on basketball this winter.

The Bears are an NCAA Division I basketball program that compete in the Big Sky Conference against teams like the Denver Pioneers, Weber State, and Portland State. They finished 11-18 in the regular season, missing the playoffs.

They've had one NCAA Division I Tournament appearance in 2011 and lost in the second round to San Diego State.