Cisco takes the next step
by Matthew Ondesko, Managing Editor
Lancaster High School’s Mason Cisco is ready to take the next step. A standout catcher for the Legends, Cisco has committed to play college baseball locally at Canisius College.
The recruiting process was different from in years past for a lot of high school process. With civid taking over the lives of many over the past few years, Cisco’s path to Canisius was a little different. It also doesn’t help that baseball in the Northeast is more of a sprint.
The Western New York weather has teams playing a lot of game in a short amount team, and they don’t play a ton of games. Normally, 14 game schedule is all you get during the spring season in WNY. That didn’t stop Cisco from being noticed by the local college coaches.
“Last year the weather was not really a factor because of how late we started the season, therefore being recruited was just a shorter amount of time than in warmer states, and I felt my time was limited to be recruited,” stated Cisco. “Canisius is a very unique school and it was obvious when I toured this was the only place for me. Coach Mazurek has built something special with the Baseball program, and it is a great spot for me for the next four years.
One of the main things that drew colleges to Cisco was the fact that the young man can rake. He isn’t naive to the fact that coaches were drawn to the fact that he can hit. He has worked hard on his craft during his time at Lancaster, and during the travel season in the summer.
Hitting has alway been a big part of Ciscoi’s game. He has worked extensively on his craft with coach, which has helped him come up with a clear plan at the plate.
“Offense has always been a main part of my game and a big reason for why I was recruited,” stated Cisco. “Hitting has always been a big part of my training. Working with Coach Dalfanso at the plate has helped me elevate my game tremendously.”
But, to get on the field, Cisco knows he needs to have an all-round game. Hitting will get him some at bats, but being able to work well with the pitchers will get him on the field - and he knows that.
So, during his time with Lancaster, Cisco has been putting in the time behind the dish to become an all-around catcher. When the offseason happens, Cisco is seen putting in the work with coach Snusz.
There he works on his catching and receiving skills, including working with his pitchers to get ready for the season.
“I stay in the gym all winter, working with coach Snusz on catching, working with my pitchers to get my legs ready for the season,” stated Cisco. “The pitching staff that our coaches built at Lancaster are second to none. Every pitcher that we have on staff is brought into what we are doing, and it showed in the offseason when we would be doing the driveline program, and
throwing bullpens a couple days a week. That offseason work built a great relationship with our catchers and pitchers for sure.”
Over the years, Cisco has gained more respect from his teammates and coaches, which in turn has made him more into a leader. Aa a catcher, teammates look at that position as a leadership position.
Cisco hasn’t shied away form that, either. Cisco makes sure he has a great relationship with his teammates on and off field. Building those type of relationships has what made Cisco into the leader he is today.
“Being behind the dish you have to be a leader no matter what. When you are catching you are in charge,” stated Cisco. “I have a great relationship with all of my teammates on and off the field, this is super important to me.”
Important also is how Cisco performed during the summer. Summer ball has come increasingly important over the years. Some players use simmer ball for different reasons. Some players will use it work on what they need to work on.
Others will put the pressure on themselves to try and excel against the best competition possible - so the college coaches will take notice. Cisco is one of those players that likes the pressure.
He excels when everyone is looking at him. He wants to show people that he can excel when all eyes are on him.
“I find that I excel under pressure, when I know colleges are watching, I’m at my best,” stated Cisco. “ I am very excited to be AAABA and return to play travel baseball for Lancaster. I am aware that nothing comes easy, I’m ready to compete and earn my roll on the team.”