NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Amanda Naujokas is a freshman from Lake Ronkonkoma, New York, a graduate of Sachem North High School and the daughter of Lenny and Nicole Naujokas. She has an older brother Anthony.
Naujokas (pronounced Na-JO-kus) had an outstanding junior bowling career which included winning the 2015 Junior Gold championship and being a member of the 2018 and 2020 USA Developmental Team. She won four gold medals at the 2018 Tournament of the Americas.
Here is more about Naujokas as part of an ongoing series getting to know Vanderbilt bowling’s newcomers:
Age I began to bowl: 4 years old.
Who got me started with bowling: My brother’s baseball coach’s sister was the bowling alley manager. The coach had a son on the baseball team and he asked my brother to join him in a bowling league. My parents put me in the league because I was not going to just sit there and watch.
Favorite musical performer: The weeknd and Morgan Wallen.
Favorite movie: Home Alone 2.
Nobody can believe I watch this TV show: Sherlock.
Favorite midnight snack: Boom Chicka Pop Kettle Corn Popcorn.
Favorite thing about myself: I can make people laugh.
The best tasting food I can make: Banana bread.
Favorite sport other than bowling: Basketball.
Biggest misconception about bowling or bowlers: That is easy to be successful.
Favorite athlete to watch in another sport: Simone Biles.
Talent I’d most like to have: Juggle.
Favorite thing to do away from bowling: To go out shopping with friends.
Favorite aspect of Nashville: Downtown.
Ultimate vacation destination: Greece.
The person(s) I admire most: My mom and two grandmothers.
Career goal outside of bowling: To become the best, well-rounded teacher I can.
The best advice I’ve received: You can only control yourself and what you do. The rest is out of your control.
Three things on my bucket list are:
- Backpack and travel through Europe.
- See the Northern Lights.
- Stay in an underwater hotel.
One thing my hometown is famous for: Bacon egg and cheese, pizza, bagels.
My advice to young people is: Don’t let anyone stop you from believing in yourself and your dreams.
The COVID-19 pandemic has taught me: Don’t take the daily life norms for granted and how important it is to check in on people daily
What I missed most during the summer’s quarantine: Not being able to go to the beach at any time and not being able to practice or compete.
Any family members play collegiate sports? My brother Anthony bowled for two years at Saint John’s University.
I choose Vanderbilt because: The team and coaches are super welcoming and made me feel like a part of the team. The campus is beautiful and the education is phenomenal. On my visit, I knew I wanted this to be my home for the next four years.