Sunday, August 17, 2008

SJO Youth Cheerleading

Today I took Faith to her first Saint Joseph-Ogden youth football game as a peanut cheerleader. The youth football league has teams from about 7 communities between our town of St. Joseph and the Indiana state line. Today we faced the Georgetown Bulldogs. There are four divisions of football players and cheerleaders by age group. The peanuts are the youngest with 6 and 7 year-olds. Next are the freshman, followed by junior varsity and varsity. All are younger than high-school age. Our high school has traditionally had a very strong class 3A football team thanks in large part to the preparation that the kids get in the youth league.

Showing the way for the Spartan team to take the field!

Jenny volunteers as the peanuts' head cheer coach, but was at the Lake of the Ozarks for her annual girls' weekend with her college friends, so it was my job to get Faith in her uniform, put her hair in a pony tail, and get her to the field by 11:30. Fortunately for the girls, I did not have to coach them also. We left church a bit early at 11:20. The opener was a home game and the fields are only about 1/2 mile from our home.

Returning to our sideline after exchanging "Hello" cheers with the Georgetown Bulldogs.

Faith did an excellent job with her cheers, though she and the rest of the girls are still learning. Like most 6 and 7 year-olds, they are easily distracted and keeping them on task is never something to take for granted. But they have been practicing hard for the last couple weeks with coach Jenny for a couple hours each night, four nights a week.

Start of the pom routine. Faith is the only girl with her head down as it is supposed to be!

Our own SJO boys won the peanut contest 35-0. Our next-door neighbor, Keanan Swanson had an excellent game, leading the Spartans at quarterback and swarming to make several tackles on defense. His dad, Cory, is a coach. We stayed through halftime of the freshman contest, when the peanut and freshman squads combined for the pom routine. Without coach Jenny leading the way, most of the girls struggled to stay on top of the beat, but they still looked pretty good for the first time out. Faith said the music sounded "mushy." The PA system at this type of event is never state-of-the-art, but the many hard-working youth football volunteers put together a great afternoon nonetheless.

The peanut team taking the kickoff after halftime. The boys play on a 70-yard field. Neighbor Keanan is number 57.

Here are a couple of videos. My camera has a great lens and takes excellent still pictures, but the video resolution is rather poor. We'll get a few good videos before the season is over.

The Hello Cheer! (Faith is in the back row, just to the right of the center of the frame.)

Peanut-Freshman pom routine: I like to Move It! Move It! (Faith is the 3rd girl in the near column at the start of the routine.)

1 comment:

LuLu said...

She is too cute for words! Nice of Jenny to be so generous with her time.