Cheer team looking for breakout year
To a lot of people, cheer leading isnt exactly held in as high esteem as most other high school sports.However, talk to any member of the Summit High School cheer team, and they will tell you that the sport is more than just pom-poms and spirit fingers.I always tell people to just come to a practice for one day, Tigers head coach Amy MacDonald said. It is much harder than it looks.Starting with their first appearance at the SHS home football game Friday, the Tigers will be on the sidelines for a number of sports throughout the school year, not to mention competing in the Colorado State Championship meet in December. The cheer team has been practicing since June, unlike most SHS sports that began in August, and even went to a cheer camp this summer to hone some of their skills.That just makes us stronger as a team, senior Ariana Mcewan said of the long season. It gives us more of a chance to come together.With practice going nearly year round, one aspect that is critical to the success of any cheer team is chemistry.It is so important that you trust your teammates, senior Lauren Bossert said. They are going to be flipping you in the air and catching you, and if you dont trust them it is hard to let them throw you.In addition to chemistry, cheerleaders need an array of athletic skills in order to compete with the best in Colorado.You really need good flexibility and endurance in order to be at this level, MacDonald said. Last season, the Tigers had their most successful year in team history, missing out on the finals at state by a mere eight points. Every year, since I have been the coach, we have improved on our scores, MacDonald said.This season could be the best yet for the Tigers, as it is the most athletes and most seniors that MacDonald has ever had on the team.Only five years ago, MacDonald had five girls come out for cheerleading. This year there are 16, including 6 seniors.This year is going to be exciting, she said.There are a lot of good teams out there, but we have girls that have put in the work, senior Jessica Sanchez said.The Tigers are using their fall schedule of cheering at other teams games to get ready for the December meet. We practice everyday, more than most teams do, DeAnna Rearden said. We practice all summer and go into other seasons.With a senior-heavy team, the Tigers are hoping for a break-out year, and, hopefully, a little more respect.[Cheerleading] really is a physical sport, Hailee Spencer said. It isnt just waving your arms around.Bryce Evans can be reached at (970)668-4634 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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