[Seniors] Chloe Chapel and Ashlee LeCompte were really good cheerleaders in high school, and they competed nationally, so they had been trying to start a team. They started it successfully in the summer before my junior year – so the summer of 2010. I was one of the original members of the team when it first started up. I think we had about 12 girls, but we have increased since then.
How has the team grown since it first started?
The team is a lot stronger than it was in the beginning. Most of the girls had prior experience, but the girls who had never cheered before have really learned a lot. The more girls we’ve gotten, we have been able to do more stunts, as well as interesting and fun things to do at games. We started off last year just doing chants, but now we have four full stunt groups.
Did you have any prior experience with cheerleading in high school?
I did not, actually. I danced a lot with the musicals I was in because I did a lot with theatre. I never cheered, but I knew how to dance and move, so I decided — and Chloe Chapel convinced me — to try out. I’ve learned a lot from it.
Do enjoy being able to cheer for your classmates that you actually know?
Actually, I always tell people that. I’ve never been a huge sports freak. I have my Michigan teams that I cheer for with my family, but there’s just something about being able to go to games and watch people that you actually know and that your in classes with and friends with outside of the field. Whereas I have all of these friends at these big state schools that go to these games, sit in the stands, and pay a ton for season tickets, but they don’t even know those people. So personally for me it’s huge to be able to go and to actually know the guys and the girls. The women’s basketball team, some of my really good friends, Chelsea Harrison and Liz Brannick, play so it’s really cool to be able to go watch them and cheer for them.
What is your most memorable experience on the cheer team?
My favorite is going to Minnesota with the football team. It was a really cool experience, we got to fly on the plane with the team directly to Minnesota and stayed in the hotel over night. I will never forget how cold it was. The game was absolutely freezing. I have never been colder in my entire life. We were absolutely freezing. We had hand warmers and feet warmers. I still can’t even image playing the actual game. The field was right on the water. It was still a super fun experience and something I will always remember doing.
— Compiled by Rachel Fernelius