Cheerleaders Warm Up for Winter Season of Competition

Lexi Preiser ’10
Web Editor-In-Chief

“Incredible, unique, and we’ve only just begun!”

The cheerleading team repeats these words during practices as it prepares for its 2009-10 winter season. For cheerleaders, the winter season signifies a change from cheering for the football team to participating in their own competitions.

Cheerleading is the only sport in the FCIAC league that spans across two seasons, which gives the girls time to both cheer for the football and basketball teams yet also compete for themselves.

“Competition season is our time to shine,” said Jourdan Friedman ’10, one of the four varsity captains. “We get to perform our hardest stunts and routines that we don’t really show during football season.”

The winter season is truly the heart of cheerleading, as the attention begins to shift from their support for the football team towards their own accomplishments and successes. While the girls still cheer for the varsity basketball team, their attention is focused more on practicing for the six competitions that they plan to attend this year.

“In the fall season, we spend practice time teaching cheers to the new girls, learning basic stunts, and forming stunt groups,” Rebeca Teplitz ’10, one of the captains said. “Winter is when we base all of our practice time on getting ready for competitions and learning our routine and perfecting it.”

Cheerleading competitions are normally comprised of five sections: junior varsity, varsity, co-ed, stunt groups, and individual routines. The events always end in an award ceremony and a dance party, in which all the competing teams can free dance together.

The team is putting in all of their effort to make sure that this competition season is the best that it can be. Their practice schedule consists of daily two and a half hour practices, including a weekly trip to Xtreme Cheer, a gym located in Norwalk that focuses specifically on helping high school cheerleaders with tumbling and stunting.

“Our new coach [Coleytown Middle School teacher Jocylyn Sadlon] is very experienced with competitions, so I feel that our routine will have the necessary skills and we will have the ability to do really well,” captain Hannah East ’10, said.

With their first competition on Jan. 23, the team is getting excited for the second phase of their August through March career.

“I’m really excited for our competition season,” East said. “Last year we did really well in States and I can’t wait to see what happens this year.

With a new coach and new routines, the girls hope to see their team excel at competitions. While they still have almost two months until their first meet, the cheerleaders have already begun working hard. The captains agree that this year, the cheerleading team is stronger than ever.

“This team has so much potential to be great and I hope that everyone sees that and acts upon it,” Teplitz said. “As a captain, I truly feel like this is one of the strongest teams we have had in a while.”

The winter season provides a time for the cheerleaders to step into their own deserved spotlight, and they encourage all of their classmates to come watch one of their competitions.

What’s not to love, as varsity member Lindsay Nelson ’11 puts it, “it’s like watching a live version of ‘Bring it On.’”