Squad Up!

By Yvan Polynice, Alley Faulkner, and Sydney Anderson
DEC. 11, 2019

Give me an S, give me a T, give me an A! That’s right! Basketball cheerleading tryouts took place on November 7, 2019. It was finally time for leg stretches and ponytails. 

There are many requirements for joining the St. Thomas Aquinas (STA) Cheer Squad. Candidates must complete the baseline test as well as three online health courses. In order to participate in this basketball cheer season, squad members must not play soccer, basketball, or take part in the dance company. Prospective cheerleaders were taught a cheer, two chants, a dance and then were tested to see whether they could execute a toe-touch jump. The judges scored the girls based on their performances at try-outs. 

Freshman, Junior Varsity (JV) and Varsity makeup STA’s three cheer teams. The Freshman team cheers only at home games. JV, which is made up of both ninth and tenth-graders perform at the boys’ home games and two of the girls’ varsity games. The Varsity team is comprised of eleventh and twelfth-graders, and is required to attend all playoff games.

Cheer practices are usually held on Mondays and Wednesdays, but this can change to accommodate the schedule of basketball games. A team member must contribute their all to the cheer squad and cannot put other cheer teams or activities before the squad.

“I want to cheer because it is something to do after school to support my school,” said freshman Linda Zarn. The candidates were very nervous about tryouts but still practiced diligently before their time to shine. Although Linda believed that it was going to be hard to learn the cheers, with practice she got it. “I want to cheer for all four years!” said Linda. 

Basketball cheerleading gives Lady Raiders a chance to show some school spirit at thrilling sports games. These girls are given the opportunity to show off some of their athletic skills. Cheerleaders easily energize the spectators  during the games and boost the Raider spirit. They help encourage the players to perform to the best of their abilities and hopefully cheer them all the way to the championships. Go Raiders!