Cheerleaders Ready for Season Ahead

"This ain't nothin' but a Colonel party! That's all, that's all, what?! This ain't nothin' but a Colonel party! That's all, that's all, what?! It's how these ladies get pumped up for their sport. By standing in a circle and chanting. And don't try to tell these girls that cheer leading is not a sport.

"If you don't think it's a sport then come to our practices and see what we do because we work really hard to get where we are. We work just as hard as any other sport in this school", says Senior Gabby Pena.

"Other sports have pads and helmets. We have the mat and that's about it. We pray that our team mates catch us and don't let us fall", Senior Alayna Wickline adds.

"Senior Kristin Fincham chimes in and says "us getting the football players pumped up every night. That's why I get so angry when they say cheer leading is not a sport. We are the ones who bring the crowd out. Football is a spectator sport and so are we."
"We practice just as much as everyone else does. We're in the gym, we're working hard. It's not like we don't sweat", Mikayla DeMaio says sternly.

That sweat from the James Wood Colonels' is dripping down their faces Monday through Saturday. They practice six days a week, because all they want is that state title and part of that winning spirit includes a little superstition.

"Oh yeah we have spirit sticks. Each girl has a spirit stick. We carry them to every competition. Oh hang on I gotta knock on wood", Pena says as she kneels down to knock on the gym floor for good luck.

Whenever they mention winning, it's the old knock on wood approach. Their coach, Tracy Copley, knows they've got the talent to win. "It's gonna be tough. I think we can do it because we are a team. We get along. Every single girl, every single athlete gives me 100 percent everyday." That teamwork and dedication will hopefully take these girls not only to the top of the pyramid, but to first place.

© Copyright 2012 TV3 Winchester / Gray Television Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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