by Aliyah Armstrong | staff writer
The bus ride was long, but the legacy that was created would last so much longer. An opportunity to make history was presented and they accepted it. The cheerleaders overcame obstacles and persevered through tough times to become the first winners of the UIL State competition.
“During practice, before we left, we felt like things were going well, we were making some last minute changes to make things better but it felt like it was going smoothly,” sophomore Eliza Harris said.
After arriving in Arlington, the cheerleaders got to work preparing for two days of competition.
“We were practicing outside, it was kind of cold out but it was worth it to us because we were doing all that practice so that we could do well and enforce those changes that we made, and set them in stone so that we could make sure we got in right when we were on the mat,” Harris said.
Despite having to practice outside in the uncomfortable weather, the team was still feeling confident going into the competition.
“We felt pretty excited and pretty happy, we thought we were going to do well and then when we were performing, we were all thinking, ‘This is going well’ while we were doing it,” Harris said.
Unfortunately on both days, things did not go exactly as planned for the cheerleaders.
“We had a fall and everyone was upset,” freshman Kayla Briggs said.
The time spent waiting for results was full of mixed emotions. As they announced the places, from tenth to first, the team did not think they performed well enough to win.
“When we were waiting to find out, we were really nervous because none of us were happy with our performance and we didn’t think that we were going to do as well but we were really nervous and anxious,” Briggs said. “When it got down to the final ones we thought that it was over but then when we found out we won, we were all really happy.”
Crying and jumping around and more crying soon followed as “We Are The Champions” played in the background. Despite getting off to a little bit of a rough start, the cheerleaders were still able to rise above the rest and it means a lot for next year’s team and beyond.
“It sets the standard very high for next year and years after this,” Harris said. “I feel like it’s going to make us more confident in what we do now.”