By Nathan Heintschel
A trip from Crookwell, New South Wales Australia to Moon Township, Pennsylvania and Richmond, Virginia covers about 10,400 miles. A few bumps in the road are inevitable when covering that kind of distance.
VCU Field Hockey senior Taleah Scott continues to absorb that road’s imperfections and is enjoying the ride.
The 22-year-old Australian comes from humble beginnings. Roughly two and a half hours outside of Sydney, Crookwell is home to fewer than 3,000 people. The town is not too dissimilar from many small downs in western Virginia. It seems like everyone knows each other, kids can roam free without worrying their parents, and there is no movie theater.
Despite how many times you have to click to zoom in on Google Maps to find Crookwell, the area is well-established on the sports map.
“We’re renowned for sport,” Scott said. “We have Olympians in our town, well-rounded, all-around, cricketers, hockey, soccer, football, rugby leagues.”
Crookwell and neighboring town Goulburn each produced a pair of athletes who competed in the 2012 Olympics in London.
Scott credits her family and Crookwell for her interest in sports. The daughter of Narelle and David Scott chose soccer as her first organized sport. However, her team lost all of its games, and she quickly lost interest. She picked up a field hockey stick around age four and followed the same path as her older sisters Maigan and Kirstie.
Scott played field hockey on club teams throughout high school and earned recognition. She played for the Australian Capital Territory state team in both the U15 and U18 leagues, teams that competed at the National level. Despite her success on the turf, Scott faced a critical decision has her high school career drew to a close.