This week's Athlete of the Week feature is sponsored by Bond Clinic.
Amanda Orcutt, a junior three-sport athlete at All Saints Academy in Winter Haven, missed a large portion of the girls lacrosse season that just ended due to severe migraines. When the team’s normal goalie had to miss the district tournament, however, Orcutt — who usually plays attack — stepped up and hopped in front of the net for the first time in several years to help her team.
|School: All Saints Academy|
|GPA: 4.4 (weighted)|
|Other varsity sport(s): Diving, swimming|
|Hometown: Winter Haven|
Her opponents would hardly have known it, though, as Orcutt had 12 saves in the district semifinal game, helping All Saints to a 7-5 win against Lake Wales and its first-ever appearance in the district final, where the team later was defeated by Celebration to end its season.
What motivated you to get back on the field after missing a large portion of the season?
I just wanted to do as much as I could for the team. This was (senior captain) Gianna Wegman’s last year and I’ve been playing with her since I was in sixth grade.
What was your mentality getting back in goal for the first time in several years?
I just kind of went into the game with the attitude of “if I miss, then I miss — move on and get ready for the next one.” I paid attention and you could tell where a lot of (the other team’s players) were going to shoot.
Can you tell us about the time you missed due to migraines?
The migraines ended up putting me on bed rest — I wasn’t really moving and couldn’t eat or drink a lot because of them. I stayed in my room for the most part, with the lights off. I was at three different hospitals. (Doctors) told me it was migraines and that the migraines caused my stomach issues, so they sent me to a neurologist over in St. Pete. … The medicine they put me on worked and I was released and was allowed to return to play in moderation.
How significant was that victory in the district semifinals for you and the team?
In the district semifinals, it was just super excited actually winning because we’ve never made it past the semis. This was the first year we made it through, which was pretty awesome — our group of seniors were really nice, really experienced and they’re good.
How did you get started in lacrosse?
Lacrosse is in my family. My mom played in high school and college. My brother played on the team here (at All Saints) before he graduated. My cousin started playing and then went to football. It was kind of a family thing. I started as a sixth-grader and ended up liking it.
How did you get started with diving?
I’ve been diving for three years and have been a captain for two years. It’s a recently new thing. I did gymnastics in elementary school and competed for two or three years. We were about to lose the girls dive team and they reached out and wondered if I would do it. I had started with swim and I said I’d try it — I ended up falling in love and doing well with it.
What is the best advice you’ve received?
It’s from my dad, but he says “be good” and “do it right the first time.” The “be good” part is self-explanatory. … “Do it right the first time” is something he’s always said when it comes to test or something like that.
Where are you looking to go to college?
Right now I’m mainly looking at USF’s St. Petersburg campus. It’s a beautiful campus. I’m looking to study behavioral psychology in children and families.
You’ve been going to school at All Saints for quite some time. What do you like about it?
I like the smaller campus and the smaller classrooms. I’ve been friends with a group of girls (at All Saints) since I was 2.
What is a hobby you have that people might not know about?
I’m really good at knitting, oddly enough. It was something I picked up when I was 10, maybe — my aunt taught me. In my closet I have a bin of knitting needles and yarn. So that and making lanyards and cords and stuff like that. I picked it up in the hospital since I couldn’t have my phone or any electronics.
What are your favorite shows to binge on a rainy day?
Currently “How to Get Away With Murder.” It was something that my mom and I watched a couple episodes of. Cop shows and that type of show is what I like. I’ve watched “Criminal Minds” and “CSI.”
What is your favorite place you have traveled to?
My favorite place I’ve been was Hawaii. We got to see all the main island and it was really beautiful. It was cool — you have the big cities and then you hop to a different island and it’s something completely different.
Any upcoming trips you are excited for?
We’re doing a European cruise this summer. … We’re going there for a heritage tour.