This is a printer-friendly version of an article from Zip06.com.Article Published December 8, 2017
While softball has always had a big place in the heart of Delia Hawkes, she truly enjoyed her experience with the North Haven field hockey team throughout the past four seasons. The sport was new to Delia when she arrived at the high school, and she loved every second of it. Now a senior, Delia recently completed her final year with the Indians as one of their captains.
“We don’t have a feeder program in town, so I kind of just decided to do it freshman year. My sister played when I was little, and I went to all her games, so that’s how I got to know the sport,” says Delia. “I came in my freshman year and started after never having played before and became pretty good. As it went on, I just started to love it.”
As is the case for many freshman field hockey players, Delia needed some time to learn the game. However, she quickly found her home at the forward position for North Haven.
“I have a very strong drive, so I can move the ball upfield to my teammates, which is effective,” Delia says. “Getting the ball into the circle, we were able to score more this year than we had in years past.”
Delia really enjoyed leading the Indians as one of their captains this fall. Delia felt that she meshed well with fellow captains Mehak Sharma and Bri Ferriola.
“I had two great co-captains, which made it really fun and easy. It was fun to lead this team, because we had a lot of great girls,” says Delia. “It was a lot of fun to lead this team and see how much we could improve. I try to be supportive for the girls, but knew I couldn’t always be their friend. I needed to be a leader also.”
Indians’ Head Coach Kim Bouffard praises the way Delia performed in the captain’s role. Bouffard says that Delia constantly motivated her teammates with both her actions and her words.
“She definitely exceeded expectations, took charge, and was a vocal leader on and off the field. She had the respect of her teammates and the coaching staff, and had great communication with the other players,” Bouffard says. “She always gave 150 percent, whether we were winning or losing. She never quit and was always positive with the other kids. She did a great job being a captain.”
Delia’s deep ties to softball largely stem from her father Curt Hawkes, who’s the head coach of the team at Albertus Magnus College. Delia’s played softball since she was five and says her dad has always been a huge influence.
“He’s always been my coach and knows how to help me. He always wants to work with me, which is very helpful,” Delia says. “If I ever had any questions or needed to work on anything, he was always there to help, which I really liked.”
Delia primarily plays first base or the outfield for North Haven. She feels that her softball IQ is one of her biggest assets on the field.
“I’m smart with base running. I’m not the fastest, but I’m smart,” says Delia. “If the ball gets hit to me, I always know what I’m doing with it. I don’t get freaked out.”
After gaining some leadership experience with the field hockey team, Delia wants to be leader for the softball squad in the spring. One way Delia plans to do that is by continuing to bring her positive mindset to the diamond.
“I’m very excited. I think the team can be very successful,” Delia says. “Whether I’m a captain or not, I think I can be a leader as a senior, and I’m excited to see how well we can do this season.”