Cheer stays on top

Wins Game Day State second year in a row


Diana Bittle

Cheering at state Natalie Waddell (12), Rylee Anglin (12), Ashlyn Dolan (10) and Taylor French (10) perform their Band Chant at State.

Kate Fletcher, Editor

Three hour practices, the will to stay on top and knowing what it takes to win were all factors that went into Cheer’s Game Day State Championship Nov. 12.

“Whenever we win at a competition, we set a precedent and other teams are going to rise to that,” senior Natalie Waddell said. “So, we need to come back even stronger the next year and set that precedent even higher so that we’ll still come out on top.”

This year the team focused on the details within their routine. 

“We had been so successful in the past with very similar routines, so our material didn’t change too much,” head coach Mandy Gerszewski said. “Just a few tweaks here and there to make the entire team look better is what we aimed for. We seek the weaknesses and then turn them into strengths. Whether it’s a motion or a stunt, we are always trying to bring out the best in the team as a whole. There is truly not just one person that makes this sport come alive.”

The cheer team has been successful in the past years. They won their first state title in 2017 and now have nine titles total, three of which include Game Day titles. 

“It took a lot of motivation to help the team understand that nothing is handed to us, and honestly, it’s harder to stay on top than it is to get on top,” Waddell said. “I also asked the team to send in videos of themselves doing the routines outside of practice during state week to make sure that we were in the best, most prepared spot we could be in.” 

The team started practicing at least 3 times a week about a month out from the competition. As state neared, they began to have showings each Wednesday. The team placed fifth at Regionals and said they used that as motivation to work harder leading up to state. 

“When they called our name chills were sent down my spine,” freshman Bellah Foster said. “I hugged my friends, and it was a really good experience.”