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Cheer faces strenuous competition season

Road to nationals begins with CIF Invitational
Natalie Garcia

The Fresno Christian varsity cheer team sets off for their 2023-24 competition season with the CIF Invitational, Dec. 2. For the first time, CIF will be creating a “Game Day” division based on Saturday’s performance.

“Game Day” is different than the traditional routines the squad has previously performed. Mixing dance, chants and stunts, with a real-time game situation provided by the announcer. This routine is full of high energy, band music, props, and the element of surprise depending on their situational sideline scenario. 

Lyla Hinton, ’25, talks about the difference between the new “Game Day” division versus a normal competition routine.

“In ‘Game Day’ we have to be more hype and pumped since we’re leading the crowd and be not as focused on ourselves,” Hinton said. ” I think the “Game Day” division is a lot more fun, we perform a lot simpler stunts and routines but that’s also what makes it harder because we have to be so energetic and excited.”

 The team will perform several times throughout the next couple of months concluding the competition season at the USA Nationals in Anaheim. 

Last year, the cheer team placed first at the 47th annual Clovis Classic cheer competition. However, due to injuries and changes in the routine, they won the competition by default because there was no one else in their league. FC cheer head coach Hope Villines talks about what the team will face this season.

The Fresno Christian cheer team performs at Buchanan High School. (The Feather)

“This team is competitive. They’re performers, and they love to be in front of a crowd,” Villines said. “This year the cheer team will be competing in a new division called game day, it’s popular amongst high school and college cheer teams. It incorporates stunts, tumbling, flags and signs.” 

Other than prepping for competition season, the cheer team has been performing at football games. They also participated in Cheer Clinic, mentoring elementary kids for a week with a final performance at Eagle Fest. 

Senior cheer captain Mia Alberta is excited for her last season on the team and hopes to bring a fun energy to the mat. 

“It’s actually crazy to be a senior captain this year, I’ve cheered for so long and to have senior captions before me to look up to and now being one of them is very exciting,” Alberta said. “I hope to bring fun and positivity because we sometimes struggle with that. I just want it to be fun for everyone.” 

As we wait for the upcoming competition season, the cheer team has been working hard on their new routines and stunts. 

Upcoming Schedules events

To read more from The Feather go to Boys soccer prepares for the upcoming season  or Varsity cheer places third in first competition.

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Kemya Hopkins
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