When cheerleading assistant coach Kara Spurrell needed to take maternity leave, captains Julia McReynolds ‘21 and Mia Garcia ‘21 stepped up to help run practices.
“I’ve been doing this since freshman year and I’ve grown to really love the sport. So, being a captain and sort of coach is fun [because] I like getting to talk more closely with new people on the team,” McReynolds said.
Although this year has been different for many sports and clubs, City High cheer has been practicing regularly and staying safe by following certain COVID-19 precautions such as staying six feet apart and wearing masks. The cheer team also practiced outside for a majority of the season until it got too cold and they moved their practices to the cafeteria.
“So far cheer has been going good. Obviously, with the virus, it’s not the same and we’ve had to make some different adjustments,” McReynolds said.
The cheer team also has many traditions including Thanksgiving dinner, the Christmas gift exchange, and senior night, which they were not able to do this year because of COVID-19.
“Since we weren’t able to do a lot of team bonding things this year I just want our team to be more connected,” McReynolds said.
The cheer season usually goes from June to March beginning with summer practices but this year their season didn’t start until late December. The team practices two times a week with conditioning and lifting afterward depending on the week.
“Normally it pretty much takes up the full school year more or less if you decide to do all two or three seasons,” McReynolds said.
Last year the cheer team traveled to the Iowa Fairgrounds for their state competition, where they placed 9th overall. This year due to COVID-19 they are unable to travel and compete this year.
“Obviously I’m really disappointed because at competitions there’s other coaches and college recruits there and that’s a big thing for me. I want other people to see the skills I have so it’s disappointing but what I’m hoping is to become a college cheerleader so I can compete in the future,” McReynolds said.