DETRIOT, MICH. — Sometimes, you never know what you can do until you try.
Anamosa’s Maddie Fischer had never thrown the discus, or even thought about it until her mom Jennifer signed her up for the Little Raider track and field meet a couple of years ago.
Now, the fifth grader is a National Champion.
Fischer won the AAU Junior Olympic Gold medal in the discus Monday, July 31, at the competition held in Detroit, Michigan.
“I couldn’t believe it,” said Fischer, who becomes the first Anamosa girl ever to win a Junior Olympic National Championship.
“I didn’t expect I’d come into a meet as big as this one and be the winner. It was shocking. The girls I was going against were throwing way father than I ever had. I was scared I was going to embarrass myself.”
Not only did Fischer not embarrass herself, but she made her family and community extremely proud.
“It was very emotional for me watching her throw,” said Jennifer Fischer.
“She was behind going into her fifth and final throw, so we knew she needed something special for her to be able to win. She gave us that. To see her standing there with that Gold medal around her neck was an incredible moment.”
Fischer topped a talented field of 47 throwers to win the AAU Junior Olympic Gold medal and National Championship coming through with a clutch 81-foot toss.
Fischer actually dominated the event, topping runner-up Savannah Hameed, of Twinsburg, Ohio, by an impressive eight feet.
“Now that I know I can do it, I want to get back here and win another National Championship again next year,” Maddie said. “I know that I’ll have to continue to work the way I already have been, and probably even harder if I want to accomplish my goals.”
Maddie’s hopes someday to earn a berth to the Drake Relays and break the Anamosa High School records in the discus and shot put events.
Fischer’s work ethic already has her poised to someday accomplish those lofty goals.
Not only does she work out regularly all summer long with Anamosa High School throwers coach Joe Beadle, but the 11-year-old is a two-year member of the Iowa Speed Youth Track and Field Club with Coaches Heather and Joey Woody.
Fischer travels to the University of Iowa indoor track and field facility three times a week from Feb.-Aug. to work with her Team Speed coaches and teammates.
Fischer just started working with Beadle this summer.
“I’ve learned a lot from Coach Beadle and my track club coaches about the right way to throw the shot put and discus,” Fischer said. “I do some javelin throwing, too, I’ve got a lot more to learn if I want to continue to get better.”
Fischer also competed in the AAU Junior Olympic shot put event as well, and placed sixth in the 62-thrower competition after a 28-foot, 1.5-inch effort.
Fischer earned her berth to the Junior Olympics after advancing through the district and regional rounds in early July.
At regionals, Fischer set meet records in both the shot out and discus.
“Maddie is going to break every record in the book before she’s all said and done at Anamosa,” Beadle said. “She’s an amazing talent who has the willingness to work and get better. That’s what it takes to succeed. Putting the time in at practice, and Maddie has shown a great work ethic. I think she truly enjoys what she does.
“It sure doesn’t hurt having some success, too.”
Fischer is using that success as fuel to work that much harder.
“It’s been fun,” she said. “Hopefully, this is just the beginning.”