LFHS Varsity Cheer Qualifies for State for the Third Year in a Row

Photo courtesy of Hoopis.
Photo courtesy of Hoopis.

Saturday, Jan 27th, the Varsity Cheerleading team successfully qualified for the IHSA State cheerleading competition. This is the biggest competition of the year for several cheer teams across Illinois and every moment in this competition season is hard work leading up to this day. 

To qualify, all teams have to place in the top five at their Sectional competition and the cheer team did just that for the 3rd consecutive year. The team made it to State for the first time ever back in 2022 after placing 3rd at their sectional. The cheer team made history that year, proving their strong dedication to the sport. Now, the team has continued to carry on that legacy by qualifying another two more times after that. Not only did they make it to State again this year, they placed 2nd at their Sectional for the first time ever. 

At the sectionals competition, there is an immense amount of pressure on the athletes to go out onto the floor and perform their best. A routine with only one, small mistake can be the difference between going to State, or the season being completely over.

Photo courtesy of Coach Debbie Vargas

Varsity Cheer team member and sophomore Reese Kelly agrees that there are very high expectations for their sectional performance. “Sectionals was definitely more pressure,” said Kelly. “Overall, I think the team’s goal the whole year was to at least make it to State, so we needed to do our best at this competition.” 

At the competition, the judges will only announce the top five placing teams out of all 15 there, making it a very nerve wracking experience. However, the team was very pleased when they heard their name called for 2nd place. 

“I was extremely grateful to have made it through to State,” said junior Lola Marsico. “It is scary working all season having bigger goals in mind that sometimes you forget the importance of sectionals.”

The top 25 teams in the State gathered to compete in Bloomington, IL, to showcase the routine they have worked on for all nine months of their season. With ten juniors making up the majority of the team, many of the athletes have experienced going to State before. 

Junior Samantha Schacher, who attended State last season shares her love for the experience, “State is so special because you get to go up against teams you would never see at local competitions,” said Schacher. “It ultimately makes everything we have worked for all season worth it.” Schacher even says after they competed this year at State, the team “put out everything on the mat and left no regrets.”

With the season finally coming to an end, it is safe to say the cheer team enjoyed every bit of it. Their performance at State was striking to the audience and all of the other teams watching them.

 According to the athletes, every practice leading up to their State qualifying competition was “worth all of their determination.” The team will continue to push through for their next season and carry on their successes for upcoming competitions. 

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    Coach GoodmanFeb 9, 2024 at 10:46 am

    So so proud of you guys! By far my favorite routine in the last 9 years! Back for redemption next year!!!

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