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Cheer team fosters friendships, school spirit

“What happens at cheerleading stays at cheerleading,” senior Katie Main said.

Main has been attending St. Martin’s since 2008 and joined the Lower School cheer team the next year. She started on the varsity squad her freshman year and has now worked her way up to captain.

Main stated that her favorite overall part about being on the cheerleading team is the bonding experience it has been for her.

“Without it, I would not have the friendships I have today,” Main said.

Sophomore Madison Granger leads the crowd in a chant during the football game against Hanson Memorial on Sept. 24. The cheerleaders said the close-knit nature of the team was crucial to its success. | Photo by Emerson Arensman

Junior Jenna Delatte agreed, saying that the team this year is “very close and super uplifting, which makes the experience ten times better.”

When people think of school spirit, the cheer team is often the first that comes to mind. From cheering loud and proud at football games to doing dances and stunts at pep rallies, the girls on the cheerleading team can do it all.

According to coach Tiffany DuSaules, each aspect of cheerleading has its advantages. Pep rallies are run almost entirely by the cheerleaders, where they can “put together the games and perform for their friends.”

Football games are where the girls can encourage their classmates on the football team, as well as lead the entire audience in chants and cheers.

Lastly, the summer practices are fun because they are where the team members “create their own personalities as a group,” according to DuSaules.

Main adds that the most entertaining part about the summer camps were the theme days they would have, such as twin day.

According to Main, one of the best parts is going to nationals in Orlando. She misses cheering in front of the big crowds and going on the Disney World rides before the competition even begins.

Although the team has not been able to compete since her freshman year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Main has high hopes for this year’s competition. Her favorite part about going to nationals, however, is “meeting a ton of different people from a ton of different places and getting to form these special bonds with them.”

Delatte also expressed her interest in going to nationals, since she has yet to attend.

“I heard so many good things about the trip that I cannot wait to experience it,” Delatte said.

While she will attend the the University of Alabama next year, Main said that being a member of the cheerleading team will always be one of her core St. Martin’s memories.

“It makes me sentimental to realize that I have finally become the person I’ve looked up to all of my previous years on the team,” Main said.

During the school day, Main looks forward to going to cheer practice and working on stunts and dances with her teammates. DuSaules agrees with looking forward to cheerleading, as it “feels like my time to have fun,” and is a break away from the high-stress levels of everyday life.

The cheerleaders said the success of the team comes from being confident in yourself and stay true to your self, which is why the team has been so important to Main.

“Cheerleading has always been a place that I have been able to call home.”

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