By Mike Beas
The two sports Madison Trisler plays at Cascade High School don’t, at least initially, seem to explore much common ground.
One is indoor in the fall, the other outside in the spring. Additionally, making contact with a volleyball appears slightly less daunting than stepping into a batter’s box and attempting to get one’s bat on a fast-moving softball that might be changing direction.
However, Trisler, a defensive specialist for the Cadets volleyball program, is currently occupying the hot corner for the softball team as its starting third baseman. In both cases, rapid-fire reflexes and good judgement are musts.
“Being a defensive specialist for volleyball has been a benefit to me as a third baseman by helping me be quick on my toes and helping me with my reaction time,” said Trisler, who started at shortstop as a freshman and sophomore (last season was canceled).
“It has taught me how to read a batter’s body language, which is big in playing defense.”
Moving a few steps to the right might not seem like a significant transition defensively, but there are differences in responsibility.
“I moved Maddy from shortstop to third base because that’s her primary position,” said second-year coach Morgan Burch, a 2014 Cascade graduate who played softball in high school and later Franklin College. “She has a good glove and really good reflexes. I think she feels more comfortable there because that’s what she plays in travel ball.”
Trisler excels academically with a 3.5 grade-point average. She is on pace to graduate with seven varsity athletic letters.
Trisler did a Q&A with ICON:
Q: How many sports do you play at Cascade, and do you have a favorite?
A: “I played volleyball and softball all four years. Definitely softball because it’s been a part of my life for a long time. I started playing baseball at 4 and learned a lot. There were softball leagues, and there was another girl who played baseball for two out of the three years.”
Q: What are your plans after graduating from Cascade?
A: “I will attend Marian University and be continuing my softball career there. I plan to study to become a physical therapist. I’ve had to go to physical therapy myself, and just learning and seeing how they work with people. Sports have been a huge part of my life, and so continuing on with it would be cool.”
Q: Do you have a favorite sports memory from your high school athletic career?
A: “I’ve had a lot of amazing memories in softball. I’ve had teammates who were older than me who really supported me, and I appreciated that. I feel like I return that with kindness. It’s a way to have the younger girls look up to me, so I’ve tried to be very positive about their success.”