Here is our Sunday conversation with Delsea senior field hockey player Nadia Berardelli.
Berardelli led the Delsea field hockey team to an 10-0 start through Friday. The right wing generated 15 goals and 10 assists as the Crusaders outscored opponents by a aggregate total of 59-2.
As a junior, Berardelli set the school single-season record with 38 goals. She also is Delsea’s all-time leading scorer with 86 and counting.
Berardelli spoke the other night with the Inquirer’s Phil Anastasia.
Q: What makes this Delsea field hockey team so special?
A: In the offseason, we have so many girls who play club hockey, who play all-year around, or play other sports. We’re all into sports. So when the season starts, we’re ready to go.
Q: How would you describe the chemistry on this team?
A: It’s amazing. We have nine seniors on this year’s team, and we’re all so close. We’re super happy for each other, always supporting each other.
Q: How long have you been playing field hockey?
A: I started in eighth grade. Before that, I played soccer. But after seventh grade, a lot of my soccer friends had gone to high school, and I didn’t really have a soccer team to play for. So I switched to field hockey, and I loved it.
Q: Right away?
A: It was an adjustment. The positions are similar to soccer, but you have to get used to the stick and the small ball and the rules. But it was pretty quick for me.
Q: What is it like to play for a legendary coach like Delsea’s Meg Under, now in her 30th season?
A: She’s been here so long, we have complete trust in her. We know what she tells us is going to be right. She knows so much about the game, and she has the experience to back it up.
Q: Why Millersville (Pa.) University for you next year?
A: From the moment I talked with the coach [Shelly Behrens] I had an instant connection. Then when I visited and met the players, I just loved it there.
Q: What’s your favorite subject in school?
A: Statistics. It’s a lot of fun. It’s something that I can understand.
Q: What is the best book you’ve read?
A: ‘Enjoy the Ride’ [by Steve Gilliland]. It talks about how we’re all so focused on our goals, and that’s great. But you have to enjoy the process. It can’t just be about the end result. I relate it to this season and to our careers in field hockey. When we get to the end we all have that same goal. We all want to beat West Deptford [in the sectional tournament]. But when it’s over, are we going to be able to look back and say we enjoyed the whole season, every day, every game?
Q: What kind of music do you listen to?
A: I’m a huge country music fan.
Q: Favorite artist?
A: Old Dominion.
Q: What’s your favorite TV show?
A: One Tree Hill. I love it. It kind of shows what high school is really like.
Q: What’s it like to have your dad [Paul] as Delsea’s principal?
A: When I was a freshman it was a little weird. I guess when you’re younger, you get more embarrassed. But now I see it as an advantage. He’s always there for me. I have that support system.