Shepard Coed Cheerleading Makes History

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Shepard Coed Cheerleading Makes History

Jourdan Jackson, Staff Reporter

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The Shepard Coed Cheer Team made history placing higher at state than any cheer squad in Shepard’s history.

“State was awesome as usual,” said head coach Nicole Staehli.,It’s the whole reason we practice so hard, so it’s always a surreal experience to look around the giant arena where the best teams in the state are competing.”

Senior captain Skylar McGrath, who has been on cheer for four years, felt that this year’s team was special.

“Compared to the past three years, this team had the energy and love for cheer that was undefeatable,”said McGrath. ““Eighth place wasn’t our goal, but it is still an outstanding achievement.”

Going into the conference meet at Reavis High School. The girls had never finished lower than second in any competition. The Astros finished second of course.

“I can easily say this is the most talented group of athletes I’ve coached,” said Coach Staehli., “Each person was already individually talented. It made it easier for us to work towards a common goal.”

Skylar McGrath, Abigail Notter, Katie Justin, Chloe Ayres and Jenny Hernandez were all named to the South Suburban Conference All Conference team.

“They displayed level four skills in all rubric categories with the best execution,” said Coach Staehlin, “making them irreplaceable and valuable athletes to our team.”

McGrath won team MVP this season.

“It was one of the best things to happen to me,” said a proud McGrath. “I tried my best to portray my love of cheer in every practice, and it definitely paid off. I am so honored.”

The season had it ups and downs, but overall the ups outweighed the downs. “This season was a rollercoaster but definitely worth it in the end,” said McGrath., “The team put in a lot of work. We are a family.”

Although the Astros are graduating eight seniors, there are high hopes for the young, promising underclassmen.

All-conference athletes Jenny Hernandez(junior) and Chloe Ayres(sophomore) will bring back experience to a young core.

“We still have lots of talented athletes left, and some promising incoming freshmen,” said Coach Staehlin. I have a feeling we will be able to continue our winning record for the next several years.”

McGrath will be taking her talents Lindenwood University in Missouri. Katie Justin will cheer at the University of Louisville.