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Fox44/ABC22 Athlete of the Week: Amanda Nattress

When Winooski basketball captain Amanda Natress had the choice to leave and go to school elsewhere, she stayed.
The Winooski girls basketball team are the defending Vermont State Champions. But a very different team this year. 

As a result, Junior captain Amanda Natress has had to step up to new challenges and a new role, making her this week's Fox44/ABC22 Athlete of the Week.

"My motivation doesn't really come from just me myself", said Natress. "It really feeds through the whole entire team. We're constantly motivating each other. We're always talking about what we can do better. And this is more of a building year for us."

And beyond her great play on the court, her motivation to lift and care for her teammates has stood out as well.

"It's really rewarding. I've kind of developed a role as not only a captain but a team mom. Like we all help each other with homework and tell each other secrets. Seeing them grow and develop is like how I think my mom looks at me. She's really proud and it's a great feeling to know that they're improving as well as making me better."

But it wasn't always a guarantee that Winooski would be her home. At one point, she considered taking her talents elsewhere, to nearby Rice Memorial. 

Head Coach Tom Prim added, ""Our numbers are always down. It's been hard because we lose kids to other schools. And now they have school choice so sometimes Winooski isn't always the school of choice."

But for Amanda, the decision to stay was easy, "I grew up around the Catholic community so Rice, I did look at Rice, but it was not the fit for me. I like the small atmosphere (at Winooski). I just like being with all my friends that I grew up with. Winooski offers a lot of programs that the bigger schools can't offer because of our small size."
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