Like any athlete, the desire to win and excel is paramount. It is all you think about. Wow to win, advance and grow. The measurement for any true athlete is how to leverage such an innate desire into all other areas and aspects of his or her life. For Cash Christiansen, returning senior for Canyon View’s Boy’s Basketball team that desire goes well beyond sports. As for getting the hard things out of the way first, well, those are just his ethics.
Growing up working on his grandfather Stephen’s farm Cash learned early the value of hard work, of getting those most difficult things out of the way so that you have time to enjoy the other things life has to offer. Taking on a more rigorous school schedule early on, Cash has allowed himself the opportunity to take time to consider some career choices without too much pressure. This has also allowed him, in his final year of high school, to take a lighter schedule and enjoy his time as a Falcon.
“Working on my grandfathers farm, I’ve always like working on and building things, and the design process, so that’s kind of sparked where I am at. I’m looking at Civil Engineering right now.” Cash continues, “With our set up as part of Success Academy at SUU, as a senior I go to school on SUUs campus and the classes funnel around my schedule. With that I just have a few classes left for my associates degree.”
As the middle child of five, Cash has both examples he continues to learn from in his older siblings and examples he himself will have to set for his younger ones. His older sisters have grounded him with examples of hard work and competition through their own high school careers playing basketball, softball and volleyball. As for his younger siblings, they are definitely learning from their older brother who never backs away from any battle in paint.
“Watching the older guys…I would always see how positive they were in supporting the team and that taught me to do the same.”
Recalling what would be one of his fondest memories as a Falcon and one that would prove his character as a teammate, Cash shares Canyon View’s run to win the Region Championship in a quadruple overtime win over North Sanpete, a game he wouldn’t even play. “Going into that game, even though there wasn’t any playing time for me, I was right there cheering on my teammates so that they knew we were supporting them.”
Looking up to a fellow senior who set the example for Cash of team first over individual play, Cash understood then that his time would come yet they would win first as a team. Playing time or not. “Watching the older guys, no matter the amount of playing time they got, I would always see how positive they were in supporting the team and that taught me to do the same. I didn’t get any playing time against Sanpete for the Region Championship, but it will always be a great memory for me. Personal success springs from team success.”
“We’ve always enjoyed watching Cash,” shares Jessica Christiansen, his mother. “He has such a great work ethic and I think that started from working at such a young age for grandpa on the farm. He loves his team and never tires to be out there in the spotlight. He would much rather give that glory to someone else and be there for the backup and get in there when he needs to.”
A great player is always aware of his surroundings. They know and understand their assignment but likewise have trained themselves to anticipate the opponent’s movements and guards against them. “It’s awesome to watch him play defense,” says Jared, his father. “Not only is he watching who he’s guarding but you see him concentrating and watching where that ball will go back and forth across the court. It’s fun because he knows when to lead off his player to give help but quick to jump back if he has to. We are very proud of him and his growth with that part of his game.”
“I think I am a go-getter,” says Cash. “I definitely put in the work to achieve my goals and end result. Basketball, school work, or in anything, I know I need to put in the energy and effort that is required to get the best out of the experience.”
While sports are a large part of who Cash is as an individual it is certainly not the whole picture. Along with his athletic successes, the young man has received a significant number of academic awards that shed light on the work ethic he embodies. In obtaining his Eagle Scout in 2016, Cash knows he has set a high bar that will drive him to continue to climb and excel even farther.
Beyond the game of basketball, Cash can be found relaxing and enjoying the outdoors. With a love for the recreation the natural environment brings, hiking in the mountains is at the top of his list of activities. Assuredly the pull to that scenery and setting lends itself to another one of Cash’s favorites as well, the next hunt.
When the final bell sounds and his time as a Falcon comes to an end, Cash hopes to pursue his dream of playing basketball at the next level yet has his sights focused elsewhere for the moment. “It’s definitely one of those wish types of goal for me to play basketball in college and something I will continue to work towards but that will have to come after I serve an LDS mission first” he says.
Tracing everything back to his work on grandpa Stephen Christiansen’s farm, Cash knows he has learned valuable lessons that will serve him well into the future. Hard work and the desire to serve others are built into who Cash has become as a man and will serve him well moving forward. His drive to become better at everything he chooses to do, always getting the hard things done first has built incredible character. “Leadership is about building those around you, understanding the value of a team and motivating others to serve one another,” he shares.
There you have it. This is Cash. It’s his strength; it’s who he is. • HSSI