Tri-sport star from Tri County signs to Doane Track and Field

Tri-sport star from Tri County signs to Doane Track and Field
Tri County senior Madison Freese (bottom row, center) signs her letter of intent to become a thrower for the Doane women's track team on Wednesday in front of her parents and coaches. Photo via Ed Fye on Twitter.

De WITT, NE – Tri-County multi-sport athlete Madison Freese, (“Frayzee” not “Freeze”), has has competed in many sports. Softball, volleyball, basketball and track.

Those last three have been her specialties for more than three years. While she calls volleyball her favorite sport, Freese signed on to be a thrower for Doane University’s women’s track team on Wednesday.

“I just think I could succeed better in track,” Freese said. “I just really like the family aspect of it, and I really love (Doane track coaches) Ed Fye and David Dunnigan. I think they’re great coaches. I think that’s what ultimately led to my decision.”

Freese was a four-year starter on Tri County’s volleyball team. She led her team this past fall with 129 kills and 225 digs. That effort landed her on the Lincoln Journal Star’s Class C2 all-state honorable mention team.

The Trojans had just one winning season in Freese’s career – a 15-12 mark in 2017. The ups and downs come with the territory, Freese says. It’s no win or record she’ll remember most, but rather those that played alongside her through the good times and the bad.

“Just having so many different teammates and seeing so many different aspects of how the game ad how it’s played,” Freese said. “It’s probably my favorite sport to play. It’s just a fun sport to play. The memories you make are very important. How you come off of a loss, come off of a win and bounce back even better.”

Freese has applied those lessons to her basketball game as well. A four-year starter for 10-year head coach Bryce Simpson, Madison put up a combined 25 points and 22 rebounds in Tri County’s wins over Wilber-Clatonia and Pawnee City this past week.

Freese was the lead scorer and rebounder for Tri County last season as well, averaging 7.7 points and 5.1 boards a night.

“Madison is a tremendous athlete,” Simpson said. “Honestly, she’s probably a kid that could have played college volleyball or basketball if she really wanted to. A tremendous three-sport athlete. That’s what small schools like Tri County and other schools in our area really rely on those 2-3 sport athletes to carry programs.”

In track, Freese placed 3rd in shot put in Class D at state this past spring after finishing 13th in the event in Class C in 2017. She was also a district champion in shot put her sophomore year.

On top of shot put, Freese will also try her hand in javelin and hammer at Doane – two events that Nebraska high school track athletes don’t compete in.

Freese believes her softball background will help her adjust.

“I think I could be really successful at javelin since I used to be a softball player,” Freese said. “I think that good could be really good for me. Hammer, I think it’s a lot of technical work, but it works mostly on balance. I’ll just have to try them out and see which one works best for me.”

Tri County track and cross country coach Dave Jantz already has two of his former athletes competing on Doane’s track team – Halle and Haydyn Weise. Both from Jansen and both sophomores this year.

They, like Freese, were multi-sport athletes also. Jantz, like many track coaches, says every sport has some aspect that translates well to track and field. While Freese had her choice at what sport she could succeed the most in,  Jantz believes that she has set herself up well when starts throwing in Crete in the spring of 2020.

“Each sport has its own skill level, and I think that all translates well to track,” Jantz said. “She has the quickness she needs to get across the ring, the strength and (the experience of) just being a competitor.”

Hear the full interview with Madison below. You can also hear it at halftime of the Tri County girls’ basketball game at Southern. That game tips off at 6 p.m., and will be carried live on Ol’ Red 99.5.

You can follow Tommy on Twitter @Tommy_NCN.

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