Steamboat Female Athlete of the Year: Nikki Fry |

Steamboat Female Athlete of the Year: Nikki Fry

Luke Graham
Despite missing the first half of her senior basketball season while recovering from a torn ACL, which also cost her the entire volleyball season, Nikki Fry managed to earn all-league hoops honors.
Joel Reichenberger
Although she’s relatively new to the sport, Steamboat Springs High School senior Nikki Fry will attend Fort Lewis College next year on a lacrosse scholarship.John F. Russell

Nikki Fry never had the sibling rivalry to brew her competitive spirit, but those poor boys in the neighborhood.

Fry, a Steamboat Springs High School senior, proved herself as one of the toughest and most athletic athletes in the past two years.

Despite missing the fall volleyball season and half the basketball season recovering from an ACL tear to her left knee, Fry showed why she is an elite athlete.

She earned all-league honors on the basketball court and was one of the top scorers in the state during the girls lacrosse season.

Fry, who will attend Fort Lewis College on a lacrosse scholarship, has been named the Steamboat Female Athlete of the Year.

It’s not hard to see why. Fry was tenacious on any field, using her elite athleticism and appetite for physicality to set her above her peers.

“Growing up in the neighborhood, I was the only girl my age,” she said. “I have no idea, but maybe that’s where I got my competitive nature. It was always about riding my bike the fastest and racing.”

Fry burst onto the scene her junior year, starring in three sports, but she tore her ACL during Memorial Day weekend in 2012, eliminating any chance of playing volleyball in the fall.

Still, Fry never missed a volleyball practice, made every game and even helped out coaching the freshman team.

“If she wouldn’t have lost that year, I think she would have had the choice to go play college volleyball or college lacrosse,” Steamboat volleyball coach Wendy Hall said.

Fry’s athletic ability began at a young age. She started gymnastics in second grade and continued through seventh grade.

There, she became physically stronger and learned to jump using her upper body.

Fry said she decided to pursue a collegiate career in lacrosse after the conclusion of her junior year. Still relatively new to the sport, Fry competed in an all-star game with top players from across the state.

“It was with girls that play year-round, and they weren’t that much better than me,” Fry said.

With just four years of lacrosse, Fry will go to Fort Lewis next year and likely be behind her teammates in the sport. But that won’t stop her from competing.

“I think as soon as she gets to college with equal-caliber athletes around her, she will really progress,” Steamboat lacrosse coach Betsy Frick said. “She’ll make huge strides. I fully expect her to be a contributor her freshman year.”

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