Power of Positivity
Cascade athlete back on track following knee surgery
By Mike Beas
Liz Guetig hasn’t cornered the market on mental attitude awards, though the Cascade senior won two during her time as a Cadets volleyball player.
It’s not to say Guetig hasn’t picked up other honors in her time as an student-athlete, but these are perhaps most reflective of the energy and positivity she brings to whichever team she’s on.
“I would say that comes from my mom (Gayla). She’s a positive person and is my No. 1 supporter,” said Guetig, the second of five children in her family and the oldest of four girls. “To me, it means I’m a positive person and the one who brings the team up.”
Guetig’s upbeat persona was tested after Cascade’s seventh game of the 2018-19 basketball season. She was driving the lane in a home game against Brown County when, suddenly, her left leg gave out. The ensuing surgery to repair her ACL and meniscus forced Guetig to miss the remainder of hoops season and all of track and field season.
She remained close to track as team manager, but it wasn’t the same for Guetig, who typically represents the Cadets in at least three events (400-meter dash and the 4×100 and 4×400 relays). There were times last spring, she admits, when she just felt like crying in her car on the way home from practice.
However, the lost track season did pave a career path for Guetig who carries a 3.9 grade-point average. She has yet to decide on a college to attend but plans to major in physical therapy once she does.
“I really enjoyed physical therapy. I enjoyed the challenge,” Guetig said. “After my surgery, my left leg was super skinny, so I liked pushing myself and watching my muscles develop again.”
The 5-foot-10-inches Guetig, a middle blocker, returned this past fall to finish third in kills during Cascade’s volleyball season with 152 and led the Cadets in blocks with 43. In basketball, she was part of a squad that finished with a 12-11 record.
“I’ve always been active, and always played three sports, and I wasn’t ready to give that up,” said Guetig, who is on track to graduate from Cascade with nine varsity sports letters. “That was my mindset. I wanted to prove that I’m coming back.”
As she prepares for track season, Guetig’s goals are more about lowering times and inspiring teammates than picking up another engraved plaque when it’s over. Even so, second-year Cascade girls track coach Courtney Barnett is impressed with everything Guetig brings to the program.
“Liz is just the hardest worker. She comes out ready every day to get better,” Barnett said. “After volleyball season, she reached out to me for exercises she could use to get ready for track season. That’s just the type of person she is, extremely committed. I just think it comes from her family. Their dynamic is very supportive.”