Cheering on through COVID


Sean Valley

Inglemoor High School Football on September 20, 2019 in Kenmore WA, USA. Photo credit: Jason Tanaka

Selin Asan, Reporter

“You can’t ride the Viking ship! The front’s on fire, the back is lit! Paddle, paddle, tippy, tippy, tippy!”

Being a crowd leader and spirit raiser is one of the many responsibilities cheerleaders have. They help the student body by teaching cheers and chants, which get the crowd’s support. 

Some of my favorite cheers to do are burrito, rollercoaster, and drop—let it roll because they’re all crowd favorites!” says Fiona Holdaway.

Approaching the season with COVID-19, the cheer team has tried keeping spirits lifted. The student section has had a limited number of people, which is why spirit hasn’t been as loud this year. Some of the most common cheers the crowd loves are the rollercoaster and burrito.

COVID-19 has been really hard on cheer because it’s more for student spirit and support, so when there’s a limited number of people at every game, it makes it hard to do our job. The seniors have gone about cheering like they would with the regular season to help motivate our teams,” Holdaway said.

As for motivating the various sports teams during this time, Holdaway said that cheer plays an important role in the Inglemoor community.

“It encourages the students to have spirit and can help motivate teams when they need it. I also think it’s a bit of a leadership role in the student body,” Holdaway said. 

Some of the senior cheerleaders continued to stay positive by reflecting on their first time joining cheer and their role during games.

Senior Natalie Kurfess said that a reason she enjoyed cheering for Inglemoor was because she was given the opportunity to be a part of the community. This is why she chose to help support the sport teams and help lift up the crowd.

“I really wanted to be involved at Inglemoor in some way, and I love the program we have. My favorite thing about cheer is the sense of community we have,” Kurfess said.

Senior Lena Shanafelt said she joined cheer to experience being a part of the team and to keep the student body engaged to promote spirit.

“I joined cheer my freshman year because it looked like such a fun opportunity, and I had been cheering for four years before that. I knew that I would enjoy being on such a tight knit team and getting to cheer at basketball and football games has been such an exciting experience,” Shanafelt said.

Being a part of the games means helping the crowd cheer on teams. Shanafelt said that she enjoyed being a part of the cheer squad and will treasure the memories that she created. 

“My favorite thing about cheer is the laughs I get to have with my teammates on the sidelines at games as well as getting to dance in front of a crowd,” Shanafelt said.

After a season of change due to the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions placed on sporting events, Holdaway said that the cheer squad has maintained their positivity to make team sports feel appreciated.

“The games have definitely had less energy in the students sections since we can’t be super close together, but we’re hoping that next year things will start to go back to normal,” Holdaway said.