Nardello, breaking records with a smile

By Gianna Shikitino
February 12, 2009

Shannon Keough

Winning races and beating school records, Dana Nardello, sophomore special education major, makes it look easy. But it’s not all a walk in the park. Being a captain of the women’s track and field team takes a lot of dedication and effort. And Nardello proves those characteristics, while maintaining a positive attitude.

Nardello started running track in fifth grade.

“I did it because my older sister did it,” Nardello said. “We always used to race each other for fun. When we were younger, we raced each other officially once in middle school.” She continued throughout highschool, at Paul VI in Haddonfield, New Jersey.

Nardello did not expect to run track in college, until she met James Williams, coach of the women’s track team at Cabrini. She sent in her running-times and Williams reserved her a spot on the team.

“How many captains do you know that are sophomores,” Williams said. Williams describes Nardello as a leader and a team player, which are the qualities every captain should possess.

“She’s a very serious person, and I admire that about her,” Williams said.

“Track isn’t like any other sport,” Nardello said. “It’s a team sport because you’re with each other eight hours a day, but at the same time it’s an individual sport.”

Nardello has ran the 500, 800, 1000 and 1600 meter races.

“Last year, I broke the 800 meter race at Cabrini,” Nardello said, with a time of 2:23.25. She also broke the 1000 meter record at University of Delaware on Jan. 31.

“She was in last place up until the last lap,” Williams said. “She sprinted passed them in the last lap because she knew she was faster than them [competitors].”

“I’m on the relay teams for three other records. The four by 400, four by 200 and the distance medley relay,” Nardello said. Last year Nardello was awarded all American in the 4X400 race, which is four teammates running 400 meters.

Nardello clearly enjoys the challenge of competing on her own.

“You beat your personal times, and I liked doing that. There’s no team to back you up, it’s all you,” Nardello said.

With all of the individual races, training and practices, winning as a team is also rewarding. “I’m glad all of the work pays out. It’s nice when everything pays off. Individual races are great, but relays are better because you’re working as a team,” Nardello said.

Teammate Shakeya Ladson, freshman social work major, knows that Nardello is an all around good captain. “She’s a very postitive person, hard-worker and a good captain,” Ladson said. “At practice she works very hard. She’s a tough runner.”

“She is one of the best middle distance runners in our program,” Wlliams said.

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Gianna Shikitino

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