Amanda Dowdy back home as pro beach volleyball returns to Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Amanda Dowdy is back where it all started.

“My dad actually drove us up here a couple hours ago,” Dowdy said. “He was like, ‘You know, Mom and I used to play softball here when you were little?’ I remember that, we used to be here, so that’s pretty cool.”

While it was softball that first brought Dowdy to Krieg Fields in south Austin, it’s beach volleyball that’s bringing her back to the city where she first fell in love with the sport.

“I got started in Aussies, and just playing in the bar leagues there, and playing to stay in shape for indoor,” Dowdy said. “Then my love for it grew from there.”

After starring at Lexington High School in four different sports, Dowdy went to Texas Tech on a volleyball scholarship. Once her time in Lubbock was done, she went overseas to start her professional career.

“With indoor, I got burned out pretty fast overseas,” Dowdy said. “It’s a different experience, and it’s either for you, or it’s not. And through my experience, it just wasn’t for me.”

Following her second season of international volleyball, Dowdy decided to leave the indoor court and make the transition to beach volleyball.

“I still loved the game, I love everything about it, but beach, there was an opportunity there for me,” Dowdy said. “It was a new challenge. You have to learn how to move in the sand, how jump in the sand. It’s definitely a process, but it’s really fun.”

The move to beach volleyball also opened up a new possibility for Dowdy: A shot at the Olympics.

“There’s no easy way to get to the Olympics,” Dowdy said. “Beach volleyball, only four athletes go — two teams, so it is definitely very cut throat. But it’s gonna be an awesome journey, and I’m so excited.”

A journey that started in Austin, and for this weekend, has brought her back once again.

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