Cheer places 9th in IHSA State Tournament

Kelsey Ford, Staff Reporter

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The varsity cheerleading team competed at the IHSA State Tournament in DeKalb, Ill. on Feb. 6 and 7. To get to State, they competed in six invitationals and one sectional competition.

If a team places in the top five at Sectionals, then they receive a bid to State. Even though they placed in the top five, they were nervous they would not make it.

“I knew that this team was capable of making it to State,” said varsity cheer coach Kelsey Pierotti. “At Sectionals, though, we did have a stunt fall, which is a full point deduction. So at the time, I didn’t know that we were going to make it.”

Despite the stunt fall, the team placed 3rd at Sectionals and received an invitation to compete at the IHSA State Tournament.

“I was really glad that we earned our spot to go to State,” said freshman Rebecca Feery. “[It showed] that our work paid off.”

In the week following the IHSA State Tournament, the girls did not have a stunt fall. They placed in the top 10 of the preliminaries, the first round of the State Tournament, and headed to the second day of the competition. They ended up placing 9th overall.

“Performing at State is a completely different feeling from a typical competition because the atmosphere is so alive with the spotlight surrounding us,” said senior Christine Choi.

During the week after Sectionals, cheerleaders kept up the daily practice and continued to perfect their routine, choreographed by Jared Erlenbaugh, a coach at Ultimate Athletics.

The week before State, the varsity cheer team was scheduled to cheer at multiple basketball games. However, the cold days prevented the cheer team from practicing, so the coaches had JV cheer at one of the basketball games to allow varsity time to practice.

“They have a drive for success, and I think that really shows,” said JV head coach and varsity assistant coach Stacy DiLullo. “All the girls want to do well in competition season, and therefore it really shows in their effort at practice, their effort in tumbling and their effort in games.”

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Cheer places 9th in IHSA State Tournament