High school cheer team prepares to be the school’s newest sport

The cheerleading team began conditioning for the fall season in May.
Valarie Soto a WInters High School Alumni returns to help Coach Sterling Davis in teaching stunting to the WHS cheer Sqaud.

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The Winters High School cheer squad has been practicing through the summer break. Coach Sterling Davis wants to elevate cheer to be seen as more than just a group at girls at a football game. Davis and squad as a whole are working on ways to earn the respect of the crowd and more crowd participation, and maybe even

[caption id="attachment_776247" align="alignleft" width="200"] Brooklyn Mariani flies during Winters High School cheer practice.[/caption]

have an impact on the outcome of the game.

Davis explained, “Do we perform for the students or the parents? It is actually both groups of people and we have to find the balance.”

The coaches and cheer captains are working on a variety of new dance routines. They are looking for the balance of dance style and music that will be something that the students would like.

All Sports Boosters donated the money for the new pom-poms and cheer signs. The new pom-pom sets look sharp. One is solid red and the other solid white–one color for each hand. The older multi-colored pom-poms are still going to be used for practices. The signs which are in the process of being made will be an added benefit to the squad as an attention grabber and encourage audience participation.

Davis and the cheer captains have been building new stunts and updating the cheer list. The old list had 75 cheers. Some of the cheers were so outdated they were no longer being performed. The Squad is looking for a way to keep it fresh for all the people in the stands.The updated list has been edited down to 50. The Cheerleaders this year will be expected to know all 50 cheers and to perform them with precision.

In this time of updates at Winters High School, with all the construction changing the face of the school, the squad is not left out. This year cheer will be considered a sport.

“Cheer being a sport is problematic, because it has two seasons.” Davis said. “We have the fall when everyone expects to see us at the football games, but competitive cheer is a winter sport.”

Davis fears that she will lose a majority of her squad to other Winter sports; basketball, soccer and even wrestling. Cheer will be considered a sport but will need to grow into its new role.

The squad this year is made up of 29 cheerleaders, 22 of which are on the varsity team. The Junior Varsity squad will have a lot a leadership and role models during cheers and dance routines. The student leadership of the squad is broken up among three Captains: Macy Paschoal, Annie Ramos, and Jorge Fernandez. Each has a different strength.

“Fernandez’s enthusiasm and commitment are unparalleled, while Ramos and Paschoal are strong dancers and excellent at choreography and developing stunts.” said Davis.

In May the squad started with conditioning. A week after school let out for summer the squad was back on campus and practice had started. The Warriors cheer will have a camp held on their home fields in an effort to keep things affordable. In the first week in August the squad will be hosting a youth cheer camp as a fundraiser for the Warrior cheer squad. The youth camp will perform at the first home game during the junior varsity halftime show on Friday, Aug. 30.

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