SHS Cheer: From Sidelines to League Champions

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Ellise Huston, Staff Writer

Not everyone thinks of cheer as a sport. In fact, most don’t. Cheer has always been an important aspect of American high school culture; during every football game, basketball game, school rally, and other spirited events, our school’s cheer team is loyally on the sidelines bringing energy, encouragement, and most importantly, cheers. But that’s not all the cheer program is capable of. 

Cheer is no longer jumping around with pompoms. Recently, Santiago’s cheer team has become involved in a new sport in CNUSD: stunt. Stunt is an intense sport in which the cheerleaders are given a routine to memorize and compete against the other schools with, awarded points based on the skills, sharpness, timing, and precision.

According to Leanna Rondon (12), senior and cheer stunt team captain, last year was Santiago cheer’s first year doing stunt, despite it existing for a couple years before that. Cheer has always been involved in intense competitions, but this was the first time they have been recognized as a real league sport. Even though last year was their first time being a part of stunt in the district, Santiago cheer has stepped off the sidelines in a big way, winning first place in their league. “We are determined to make this a streak,” Rondon declares, “This year we are focusing so much more on stunt. We have decided to only do three competitions so we can get ready and go into stunt earlier.” 

Cheer has evolved into a much more demanding sport, with training and practice schedules as intense as any other sport on campus. So next time you are faced with the question of is cheer is a “real sport” or not, the answer should be obvious–it is.