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12/5/2012 2:34:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Photo by Parsons
Amanda Bobbitt, a freshman at Cashmere High School, was recently selected to play on an international volleyball tour team with NBC Camps. Needing to raise a total of $5,200, Bobbitt plans on doing fundraisers and working to pay her way.
Volleyball player Bobbit earns trip to London
Kacie Thrift
Staff Writer

Cashmere High School freshman Amanda Bobbitt thought her chances were slim when she applied for an overseas trip to play volleyball with Northwest Basketball Christian Camps (NBC). Even though things were going good for her after she was put on the varsity team, she knew it was a long shot.

A few months ago, in the beginning of the 2012 volleyball season, Bobbitt was putting away the net poles after practice one evening when her coach Katie Broadbent and teammates started acting strange.

"At first, I thought my team was picking on me. We were putting the poles away and my coach practically ran me over trying to get out of there and then I had a friend that did that too. I was thinking, what is going on?" Bobbitt said.

After all her teammates surrounded her, Bobbitt's friend let her go and her mom Trina Heuchert came around the corner holding balloons. When she first saw her mom, she had no idea what the balloons were for until Heuchert told her daughter she had been accepted to play volleyball in London with NBC.

After reality settled in, Bobbitt and her mother both realized how far she had come in just a few years. Bobbitt has never thought of herself as a star athlete. She described herself as someone who used to be shy on the court and doesn't have a natural talent in athletics.

In the fifth grade when Bobbitt started playing AAU basketball, a habit that no one ever thought twice about started to become a serious pain for her. Bobbitt has been a toe walker for most of her life. She said because she walked on her toes, running, jumping, and most physical activity was difficult.

In the seventh grade during recreational soccer, Bobbitt's Achilles tendon started to put her in so much agony, the doctor sent her to physical therapy where she would go three times a week. During physical therapy, Bobbitt had to learn to walk all over again. After 11 months of painful therapy, Bobbitt started playing sports again. Even though she knew she wouldn't be the star and would most likely continue her play on B teams and bench sitting, she played anyways because she enjoyed it.

After an injury in soccer, Bobbitt was turned on to volleyball, a sport she never thought twice about. She started putting hours on top of hours into practicing the sport to get better.

"I wanted to do this to prove to myself I can do it and I can be good enough. If I work hard enough I can be good enough," Bobbitt said.

Sports are not the only activities that make up Bobbitt's achievement list. Starting in the fourth grade she has worked hard to build her resume by participating in volunteer service, extra curricular activities in school, and working hard on her studies. In the past six years, she has competed and placed in math and spelling competitions, taken accelerated classes, and took the SAT's as an eighth grader. Her SAT score assisted in her being accepted into the Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth program.

She has spent the last five years being involved in different types of leadership and community service programs. In the eighth grade, she received a Youth United Service Medal and the Gold Presidential Service award for her volunteer hours. In the seventh grade, she attended the Junior National Young Leaders Conference in Washington D.C. after being nominated by a teacher.

After attending an NBC volleyball camp last summer and continuing her training on her own time, Bobbitt was named to the varsity team by the first game of the 2012 season.

"I never expected they would put her on varsity because she played B team in the eighth grade. She put a lot of work into it over the summer and she decided she loved it and worked for it. She can do anything she puts her mind to," Heuchert said.

Bobbitt has already put $1,000 toward her trip to London but she needs to earn $4,200 more. She hopes to find babysitting jobs over the year to earn money (she is certified in babysitting and CPR). She is also going to do fundraisers including a donation breakfast at her church and a murder mystery dinner. Bobbitt plans on going to local service clubs and asking for help on top of raising money on her own.

If you would like to donate money to Bobbitt and sponsor her trip you can visit fundly.com/m/uk-volleyball-tour-2013.

"This is an opportunity to meet a lot of new people. The NBC camp helped me grow as a person and I think this will definitely build on that. Going out there I was really shy on the court and intimidated by all the other girls because I wasn't very good but then the camp really helped me with that," Bobbitt said.

Kacie Thrift may be reached at 782-3781 or reporter@cashmerevalleyrecord.com.

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