The 2017-2018 cheerleading season officially started on Monday, October 23, when their practices began. This season there are 8 athletes on the team: 7 girls and 1 boy. The team consists of senior Lydia Pataky; juniors Grace Soete, Lexi Oetterer, Diana Ribera, Elsie McNabb, Mikayla Maloney, Megan Boehmer; and sophomore Bernabe Ribera. Mischki Soete is this year's returning cheerleading coach, who has helped coach for two years prior.
“I'm very excited about the season and hope everyone stays healthy. There are new cheers and stunts to learn,” commented Coach Soete. “It will take work and determination, but I feel the squad is ready for it.”
The team has already picked out and ordered their uniforms, including shoes, bows, and traveling jackets. They have also started fundraising for the upcoming season by selling chicken at the Penn-State Chicken Stand this summer and selling cotton candy at the Balloon Festival September 30th.
This is the first time the New Haven High School cheerleading team has had a male cheerleader, and the cheerleaders are really excited about it.
“I think it's awesome! It's brave of him to do it,” said Grace Soete.
Bernabe Ribera was asked how he felt about being the first male cheerleader, and he replied, “Since I am the first male cheerleader in New Haven history… I am a little nervous for performing in front of people.”
According to the squad, they are very excited for all the new members and stunts they have this year, as well as for making new cheers as the season goes on.
“I'm looking forward to making new cheers for this year. It'll be something new, and it'll be interesting to try to incorporate some sort of dance routine. I also can't wait to try out the new stunts we have practiced in a cheer camp we went to this summer,” said Diana Ribera. “A lot of new things may happen this year for the cheerleaders.”
Best of luck to all the new and returning cheerleaders this year.