By Maclaine Willett, Editor-in-chief
As the fall season kicks off, the cheerleading team is firing up the spirit of the Whalers football team and their audience through their high energy cheers and Whaler pride. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic that affected the way fall sports ran last year, the cheerleading team was unable to support the football team during the usual time of the year at which football season takes place, having to cheer in the freezing weather of February during Fall II. But, this year they are able to step back into a more normal atmosphere with their regular fall season.
The squad has had to adjust to losing key senior Kamoy Barnett last year, but they have been able to find their balance and perform just as well with this fresh group. Senior Haley Ray touches on this subject, stating, “We all get along so well,” making for a “fun and upbeat” atmosphere. She continues to state that although losing a senior last year is always hard, there are new members of the team that “fit right in with us.”
Senior captains Arielle Holmes, Emmae Oberg, and Alexis Connole have really stepped up into their leadership positions to help make the cheerleading team such a positive and inclusive environment. Along with the familiar senior captions, fans will definitely see some new faces on the cheerleading teams at football games, which means the younger players will make for great teams in the future as well.
So far, the cheerleading team has supported the football team at two games, one being a home game against Dennis-Yarmouth, and one away against Mashpee. During the home game against D-Y, where the Whalers came out with the win over the opposing team, the cheerleading team played a key role in that victory with their spirited contributions of celebration. They were able to go out on the field at half and cheer to give the fans some entertainment, although they did not do a dance for the halftime show during that first game. But, they have all stated that in future games they look forward to showing off a halftime show that they have been working on. For the particular one that they are preparing for now, the cheerleaders plan to come up with a cheer and dance routine to show off at the nearest pep rally. These dances are sometimes composed of choreography that the cheerleaders themselves come up with, which is super rewarding for them to perform them.
Another part of their season that the cheerleaders are looking forward to is the participation in pep rallies for the sports teams. At these events, the cheerleaders lead the activities that bring spirit and fun to the night, which is usually prior to a football game and/or homecoming day. They keep the energy and intensity high throughout the event, providing excitement for the coming games.
As the cheerleading season is well underway, the team is just excited to continue cheering at games and also the many intriguing events that are in the near future. As Arielle Holmes, one of the senior captains states, the season has been very “productive” to allow the cheerleaders to learn new cheers and halftime routines. Overall, the cheerleading team is looking at a successful and enjoyable season for this fall.