Eighth-grader Ella Trinkaus stands out for Notre Dame softball


UTICA — Notre Dame eighth-grader Ella Trinkaus is among the youngest softball players on a varsity team in the area this spring.

Also impressive: it is her second season on the Jugglers’ varsity squad after being on the team in 2021. She’s not the only Trinkaus on the team, either: Twin, Erin, and sophomore Maggie are also contributors for Notre Dame.

Ella Trinkaus, part of a big family from Marcy, is off to a hot start for Notre Dame (3-2 overall) this season with highlights on defense and offense. 

In the circle as Notre Dame’s lead pitcher, she totaled an impressive 18 strikeouts April 6 in a 3-0 win over Proctor. Entering Friday, her 42 total strikeouts were among the most in Section III, according to statistics provided on highschoolsports.com. Her 28 1/3 innings pitched are also among the most. 

Offensively, she has at least a hit in each of the Jugglers’ five games and totaled five RBIs on Monday in a win over Oriskany. She’s batting .471 heading into Notre Dame’s game Monday at Camden.

Here are five questions she answered for the Daily Sentinel:

You’ve been on the varsity team as a seventh and eight-grader, what does that opportunity mean to you?

“My sisters help me a lot. It helps me be more responsible and more mature. My teammates are very helpful too. It is definitely way more competitive.” 

You had 18 strikeouts against Proctor. What was going through your mind as the game was going on? Were you aware you had all those strikeouts?

“Not really in the moment. Every game, I’m nervous. I try to do my best and help my team the best I can.”

You’ve also had success while batting this season. What do you like more: pitching or batting? Why?

“They’re both different in many ways, I feel. Pitching is more mental. If you walk someone, you have to make sure it is out of your mind for the next batter. With hitting, I just like to wait for every pitch and make sure I’m ready and just try to make contact.”

What are your personal and team goals this season?

“At the beginning of the season, I wanted to have 12 to 15 strikeouts in a game. I achieved that, so I’m thankful for that. … I also want to get better at hitting. 

As a seventh-grader, her season-most was 11 strikeouts in the circle. At the plate last season, she batted .283.

“My team goal is, I really want to see how far we can make it in sectionals.” 

You also are on Notre Dame’s soccer and basketball teams. What do you like to do in your free time?
“I love hanging out with my family. I have a pretty big family. I like hanging out with my friends, too. Just like what an average kid likes to do.”

She also participates in the school’s ROTC program on the weekends, she said. 


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