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Tag Archive | "Cheer"

Three Red Hawk grads national champs in cheer

(L to R) Brittani Tozer, Heather Howard, and Amber Dunham are part of the Davenport University Cheer Team, which won national championships in both Competitive cheer and Stunt this spring.

(L to R) Brittani Tozer, Heather Howard, and Amber Dunham are part of the Davenport University Cheer Team, which won national championships in both Competitive cheer and Stunt this spring.

Three Cedar Springs High School graduates performed a rare feat—they captured two national championships, in different events, in the same season. Brittani Tozer, Heather Howard, and Amber Dunham, accomplished this in Competitive Cheer and Stunt, as part of the Davenport University Cheer team.

The team won their third national competitive cheer title in a row, after competing on April 9 and 10, in Daytona Beach, Florida. On April 9, 26 teams participated in the preliminaries, with Davenport finishing in the top spot. Half the teams moved on to the finals on April 10, with Davenport performing last. They had a near perfect performance to win the NCA/NDA Division III All Girls Competitive Cheer National Championship.

In May, the team won their first national title in Stunt, in which they have only competed two years. The dates were May 1-3, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The top four schools in each division were invited to participate. The divisions were I and II, and Davenport was rated 2 in Division II. Their challenge was to defeat Oklahoma Central University, who had won this championship three years in a row. The tournament was double-elimination. Davenport defeated Oklahoma Central in the semi-final, and then again in the final.

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Cedar Springs Cheer continues to dominate

Cedar Springs Varsity Cheer took first-place at their own invitational last weekend.

Cedar Springs Varsity Cheer took first-place at their own invitational last weekend.

Cedar Springs Cheer hosted an invitational this past Saturday, which included the Middle School, Junior Varsity and Varsity teams. This is the first event of the season where all four teams were able to compete at the same time and location.

Cedar Springs Middle School White team took second-place at last weekend’s invitational.

Cedar Springs Middle School White team took second-place at last weekend’s invitational.

Due to inclement weather, schools had to back out last minute, which cut down the Middle Schools competition to three teams. Cedar Springs White took second-place after Round 2 with a score of 95.04. They secured a second-place ranking after gaining an additional 226.4 points after Round 3 and overall score of 321.44. “The girls were excited to cheer in front of their home town and I am proud to be a part of the Cedar Springs Cheer tradition,” said Head Coach Cassandra Chartier.

Cedar Springs Middle School Red team took first-place at their own invitational.

Cedar Springs Middle School Red team took first-place at their own invitational.

Cedar Springs Red earned a high score of 129.40 to take the lead of first-place after Round 2. With an additional score of 270 points and an overall score of 399.4, Cedar Springs Red remains undefeated, with another first-place Victory. “This crazy Michigan weather left us with one day to practice a new round, and these girls performed absolutely amazing with the time they had to work with. I pushed them pretty hard and I had confidence they would rise to the challenge,” said Head Coach Amy Arnold.

Cedar Springs JV Cheer took first-place at the Cedar Springs invitational.

Cedar Springs JV Cheer took first-place at the Cedar Springs invitational.

Again, with the last minute school cancellations, the Junior Varsity team, coached by Katy Baird, also had three teams to compete against. Coach Baird is returning to Cedar Springs and bringing with her nine years of coaching experience. She has been part of Cedar Springs Cheer for four years prior to her return. Round 1 of competition brought a score of 170.7, taking the lead of first-place. Round 2 gained an additional score of 152.06 and bringing their subtotal score to 322.76, which kept them in the lead. Securing another Championship and remaining undefeated, the JV team earned an additional score of 202 points, giving them an overall score of 524.76. “Due to the nasty weather this week, our team missed two practices after learning a new routine. There were a lot of challenges but these girls stuck with it and did very well. I am very proud of them,” said Head Coach Katy Baird.

The Varsity Team, coached by Anne Olszewski, had five teams competing against each other. Coach Olszewski has 31 years of coaching experience, the last 10 years has been here at Cedar Springs; seven years with our Competitive and nine years with our Sideline. She has coached or been involved at every level of the Cedar Springs Cheer Program and still serves as League Director to Northern Rocket Cheer. Round 1 earned a score of 218 points taking the lead. Round 2 kept the lead with an additional 179.48 points bringing their sub total to 397.48. Round 3 gained an additional 258.6 and secured the Championship with a score of 258.6 and an overall score of 656.08.

“Part of my job as coach is to pick out the wrong but to also find the good, recognize the good and how to improve the good.  Each week we are making small improvements, contributing to the overall success, we are making the good into great. We are really kicking butt and they rise to the challenge with everything that I throw at them. The Varsity team has 2 twisting full layouts on the team and we have not had this since 2007. I am extremely proud of my team and honored to work with them every day,” said Head Coach Anne Olszewski.

Cedar Springs Cheer is building a tradition where the collective efforts of the athletes, coaches, parents and community make championships possible. Please keep supporting Cedar Springs Cheer, “faith over fear, this is our year!”


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Cheer team clinches district title

Ingles named Coach of the Year

The Cedar Springs Competitive Cheer team hosted the MHSAA’s Division 2 District Competition last Saturday, February 18, where they walked away as the District Champs. The Lady Red Hawks faced fierce competition, as all teams came prepared to win. However, it was the Red Hawks that rose above the rest.

After Round 1, in which precision is key and jumps are crucial, the Cedar Springs Red Hawks, Byron Center Bull Dogs, Grand Rapids Christian Eagles and Kenowa Hills Knights were all one point from each other, with Byron Center in first, Grand Rapids Christian second, Kenowa Hills in third and Cedar Springs fourth.  The Lady Red Hawks came out in the second round with determination and focus, pulling ahead of the rest of the competition with an 8-point lead, while also achieving their best round 2 score of the year with 227.4 for a subtotal of 450.3, landing them in first place going into round 3.

In Round 3, the stunting and gymnastics round, the competition was tough, anticipation rising, and it was too close to call from the view of the parents and spectators. It was suspenseful, with everyone wondering who would finish on top.

Fenessa Cotten, a senior on the team for The Red Hawks said, “I believe that during this past week, the team really pulled together and was extra excited about districts because we were hosting it. During the week, coach had us watch some inspirational videos at practice. Once we were on the mat for round one, I was thinking that I didn’t want it to be the last time to be performing our rounds together as a team. So I put my heart and soul into every round and gave it everything I could. I kept thinking to myself, ‘if I want to succeed, I need to want it more than I can breathe’ (it’s from one of the videos coach had us watch). Also, everyone was helping to get each other pumped up! Which helped a bunch!”

The Lady Red Hawks hit all their marks and now all they could do was wait for the scores. Senior Kelli Markosky, was excited to say, “Winning the title of district champs was something I didn’t even think about going into that competition, but after our round three, I knew we had given it our very best, and to hear our name called as District Champs my senior year is a memory I will cherish the rest of my life.”

The Lady Red Hawks’ score of 316.3 for the third round was a new school record for the Lady Red Hawks for round 3 and they scored 766.6 to take first place overall. The Kenowa Hills Knights took second with a final score of 746.6, Byron Center Bull Dogs placed third and the Grand Rapids Christian Eagles took fourth. All four move on to regionals, which will be held on February 25 at Grand Rapids Christian High School.

Coach Pam Ingles commented, “I’m so proud of all of the girls pulling together and working as a team. Their talent and drive came shining through at a pivotal point in our season. I can’t wait to see what we will continue to do this week at regionals on Saturday.”

Congratulations also go out to Coach Pam Ingles for being awarded Competitive Cheer Coaches Association of Michigan’s “Coach of the Year for 2012” for our district.


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Cheer team takes second at tournaments

The Cedar Springs Competitive Cheer Team has been working hard and living up to their team motto of, Never Settle.

On February 1, they arrived at Sparta High School for the OK Blue Competitive Cheer Competition.  After 2 rounds of competition, the Lady Hawks were only 3 points from first place.  After a hard fought third round, the Lady Hawks took second place falling to Comstock Park by only 6 points.

The cheer team traveled to Lowell’s Invitational Cheer Meet on Saturday, February 4.  They went head to head with some of the areas top teams and after 2 rounds of competition only a few points separated the Lady Hawks from Jenison who was holding second place and Kenowa Hills in first place.  It was an exciting round 3 with the Lady Hawks scoring their best in the third round for the season and after all points were calculated, the Lady Hawks took second losing to Kenowa Hills by only 5 points. The team also achieved their highest final score of 739.1 for the season showing that this team is not giving up.

“The competition at Lowell was in my opinion the best competition this season, by far. We really stepped it up, and got another high score of the season,” said junior Devon woods. “The announcer kept calling off schools, finally placing us at second, and second place couldn’t have felt better. This competition really showed me why I do competitive.”

“After seeming to struggle to get the consistency going, this week seems to be a turning point for the girls,” noted head coach Pam Ingles. “Our round 3 has finally scored 304.5 and one of our goals was to score above 300. We will continue to focus on the details in all 3 rounds to prepare for the upcoming competitions.”

The Red Hawk Competitive Cheer Team competing at conference finals at press time on February 8 at Cedar Springs High School. They will then travel to the Delta Plex on February 11.  Come on out and show your support for our Lady Hawks.

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Cheer team take first and second place finishes

The Cedar Springs Varsity Competitive Team has been showing what they’ve got this season, finishing usually in the top two.  After losing many seniors last year the team has had their struggles, however using their team motto of never settle, they have shown that they can and will overcome. Their season started when they finished 2nd at the Cedar Springs Invitational on January 7, losing to Kenowa Hills. On January 12, they went on to fight for another 2nd place finish at the OK Blue Conference Tournament at Belding, falling short of a 1st place finish by only one point to Comstock Park. The Red Hawk Cheer Team achieved another 2nd place finish on January 18 at The OK Blue Conference Tournament at Comstock Park, again falling to Comstock Park’s 1st place finish. The Red Hawks continued to show their determination, clinching another first place finish at the Red Hawk Invitational on January 26.

Changes in the team’s line-up have also been an obstacle for the Red Hawks. It showed in last week’s competition, where they placed 6th out of 11 at East Kentwood. “This season has definitely been a season of lessons learned about perseverance and the will to overcome obstacles, “ said head Coach Pam Ingles. “This team has shown that they will do what it takes to get the job done for any given competition.” Ingles went on to say, “We will continue to work on cleaning up our rounds and working towards our goal of advancing out of the district competition in three weeks.  I know that they will push and work hard to get the job done.”

The Red Hawk Competitive Cheer Team will continue to fight for those top finishes when they travel to Sparta on February 1st and again when they travel to Lowell on February 4th.  Please come and cheer on these hard working girls and show them they are supported.

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Congratulations to the Varsity Competitive Cheer team!

Red Hawk Cheer team 7th in state

“Take the Lead” was the team motto for the season and it seemed to take on different meanings over the course of the season.  One might interpret it as taking the lead in all 3 rounds to win that competition while another might interpret it as being the leader for their team. Throughout this season, this team definitely encountered numerous adversities that they had to overcome in order to reach their final goal of making it to the D2 Competitive Cheer State Finals. The week before State Finals wasn’t any different, the team would have another obstacle to overcome as they entered into the State Finals competition.

“I’m so proud of how all of the girls really pulled together and helped each other out while we were preparing for the biggest competition of our season. I saw new leaders stepping up on our team and our team motto ‘take the lead’ took on a whole new meaning for me!” said Coach Pamela Ingles.

As Saturday approached, the team was continuing to prepare for their competition by finishing all the last minute details for each round.  At the end of their practice on Friday, the girls took a few minutes to share a funny memory from the season with their teammates and several had tears from laughing so hard about a memory that may have been forgotten.  They also shared what they were going to do at State Finals to give everything they could for themselves and their teammates as this would be the last time this team would compete together this year. Saturday morning, the team traveled to the Delta Plex in style. A limo transported all 20 teammates and their coach to the State Finals competition at the Delta Plex.

“It was nice to be able to surprise the girls with special transportation for something that they have worked so hard to accomplish all season—making it to State Finals,” remarked Coach Ingles.

When they arrived to the Delta Plex, they were greeted by several of their fans holding a banner that said “Congratulations Cedar Springs Varsity Cheer.” Out of the 20 girls on the team, 11 where returning from last years team. For 9 of the girls, this experience would be a brand new experience.

Junior Kelli Markosky described her first year experience at State Finals as, “One word—accomplishment. I know that’s what was on everyone’s mind as we walked through the doors of the Delta Plex and realized ‘WOW, we met our goal…we are at State Finals.’ As we stood in line for the national anthem, our hearts were pumping with excitement.”

The Delta Plex was filled to capacity and this was the biggest crowd the girls would compete in front of all year. After they finished round 1, they had their highest round 1 score of the season with a 223.3.  After all the teams had finished round 1, the Red Hawks were in 7th place by .2 behind Kenowa Hills.  Round 2 was started off by Gibraltor Carlson who had 16 girls on the floor compared to Cedar’s 12.  The girls knew they would have to go out there and have their best day in round 2.  Again, they had one of their best round 2 scores with a 235. With only one round left to go, the Lady Red Hawks were still in 7th place behind Lakeshore. Kenowa Hills had dropped to 8th place with an 8 point penalty during round 2.

“Walking out for round 3 was my last time to compete with this team, I knew I had to make it the best round ever and make it a lasting memory for our seniors,”  said sophomore Nicki Luevano. They earned a round 3 score of 307.6.

All of the hard work that started in November would be finished after round 3 was completed.  The perseverance, determination, hard work, and dedication to never give up led this team to their 2nd State Finals appearance, one that they hope will continue as a tradition into the upcoming years.

“It was an amazing feeling to be back at State Finals. Now we just need to aim to go back next year.  I would be so ecstatic if we went to State all four years of High School,” said sophomore Katie Maka.

As the final scores were tallied, the Cedar Springs Red Hawks would score their highest score of the season – 766, which would place them as the 7th best team in the State for D2. “7th isn’t what we were hoping for, but considering everything our team went through I’m satisfied. We found that when its necessary we can pull together and we did as we earned our highest score of the season!” remarked senior Brittany Lenardson.
In the future when this team reflects on their season, they will remember all of the memories they made during practices, competitions, team bonding activities, and ultimately the journey throughout the season to make it to their final goal – making it to the D2 State Finals Cheer Competition. As stated by senior Heather Mindler,”It was the best experience ever to compete at the State Finals!”

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Red Hawk cheer team heads to state

Cheer team takes third at regionals

Next stop: State finals!

One major goal was set as a team by the Varsity Competitive Cheer team back in November at the beginning of their season…to make it to the D2 Competitive Cheer State Finals. Many hours of practice, competing, changing the rounds to make them better, and getting the girls to push themselves to work harder finally paid off at the Regional competition on Saturday at Grand Rapids Christian.

Seniors on the cheer team. Back: Ally Byrnes, Amber Dunham, Brittani Tozer, Kirsten Vanloo. Front: Taylor Denslow, Brittany Lenardsen, Heather Mindler.

The Red Hawks were the first team to start off the competition in round 1.  “We talked all week about coming out in round 1 and to give everything they have because once your done you can’t go back and do it over,” said Coach Pamela Ingles.  That is exactly what they did and had one of their highest scores with a 223. They were in 3rd place by 1.5 points.

Next, they had to prepare for round 2, which is the round that really starts to separate the teams scores because of the difficulty of skills used. The Red Hawks had really been working very hard to clean up all of theory skills on round 2 and it was well worth it. They scored a 232, which pulled them up to 2nd place.

One more round to go and they could be competing at the State Finals again.  “I remember telling them before round 3 to think about the details we had been working on all week and most of all to have fun!” remarked Coach Ingles.  They had a solid round 3 with their highest score of the season with a 308.

In the end, they placed third, ¾ of a point behind second-place Kenowa Hills. Mount Pleasant won the District, and Stevensville Lakeshore took 4th, to round out the top four heading to state

Their hard work all season-long earned the Red Hawks a return trip to the State Finals.  They will be competing at the D2 Competitive Cheer State Finals on Saturday, March 5 at the Delta Plex.  Starting time will be 10:00 a.m. Doors will open at 9:00 a.m. for spectators.

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Cheer team headed to regionals

The team of 21 Varsity Competitive Cheerleaders had a goal in mind when they walked into the Kenowa Hills gym for their District Competition on Saturday, February 19. They wanted to extend their season by being one of four teams that would qualify to compete at the Regional competition at GR Christian HS on Saturday, February 26. However, they were not the only team at the District Competition that had that goal. Every team dreams of advancing to the next post season competition, but only the top 4 will advance.
“The girls knew they would have to have 3 solid rounds in order to advance and that the competition would be one of the toughest they had faced all season,” said Coach Pamela Ingles.

After round 1, GR Christian was in the lead with a score of 224. The 2nd place team was at 220 and the Red Hawks were in 6th place with a score of 218.3.  Second-sixth place were all within about 2 points of each other. That only confirmed how tight the race to the finish would be. After round 2 the Red Hawks had moved up to 2nd place and were still hoping to win the District title. After the girls finished their round 3, they knew that had a chance, but would it be enough to catch Kenowa Hills who was currently in the lead?

When the announcer was getting ready to read the final results, the girls were huddled together in their team circle hoping that they would advance to the Regional competition and extend their season. Fourth place went to Sparta, 3rd place went to Mona Shores, 2nd place went to Cedar Springs, and 1st place went to Kenowa Hills. The team was excited that they would be continuing on.

The next goal is to be in the top 4 at the Regional competition, which is this Saturday at Grand Rapids Christian High School at 10:00 a.m. This competition will be even tougher since it will be combining 3 districts, 12 of the top teams on the west side of the state, and only 4 will advance to the State Finals.

“This team definitely has the talent, potential, and drive to advance to the State Finals again, but we will need 3 solid rounds as I feel this competition will be even tougher that the District Competition,” commented Coach Pamela Ingles.

Please come out and support the girls at GR Christian HS. Starting time is 10:00 and doors will open for spectators at 9:00. Cost for entry will be $5.00 per person.

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JV Cheer remains undefeated

A wintery morning that covered the streets with snow could not stop the Cedar Springs Red Hawk cheer teams from heading to Mount Pleasant for a competitive cheer invitational on Saturday. A competition with 28 JV and Varsity teams from all around the state kept the girls busy all day.
Both Red Hawk teams did very well.  The JV team set another new Rd 3 record with a score of 277.9.  The Varsity team also had the highest rd 2 score among all of the Division 2 teams there with a score of 235. In the end, the JV team remains undefeated and they claimed another 1st place victory. The varsity team finished in 3rd place.
Both teams will be competing on Thursday, January 27 at Cedar Springs HS in their home invite at 6:00 p.m.

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Cheer teams dominate with first place finishes

MS cheer team

The Cedar Springs Middle School Cheer Team.

What does it take for a team to prepare for a cheer competition?  Hours of practice perfecting motions, jumps, tumbling, and stunting.  It’s a sport that some are starting to realize is growing in numbers in Cedar Springs and around the State.
Saturday’s cheer competition was held at Cedar Springs High School and started with 10 middle school teams competing for the first place title. The Red Hawk MS team earned their first first-place finish on Saturday morning.  It was also the first time for the 5/6th grade competitive team to exhibition what they have been working on to prepare them for the upcoming years in a sport they already love.
Saturday afternoon would be the start of a busy upcoming schedule for the JV and Varsity teams. Both teams have been working really hard to perfect their rounds. It was a successful afternoon for both teams. For the JV team, they broke the JV records for their highest ever score in Rd 1 – 207 and in Rd 3 – 270.2. They won the JV division and with their final score, they beat several Varsity teams and would have placed 4th out of all the teams that competed that afternoon.

varsity cheer

The Cedar Springs Varsity Cheer Team.

The Varsity team has also been working very hard to fulfill the team motto “Take the Lead” as early as they can in a competition. They were in the lead after round 1 and continued to hold that lead for a 1st place finish.
“We changed a lot of things in our rd 1 and in our rd 3 since our first competition in December,” said Coach Pam Ingles. “The girls did a great job and it is fun to see them finally start to come together and work together to accomplish our goal.”
After the competition was finished, every Cedar Springs cheerleader could be seen proudly wearing their first place medal. “I’m so proud of everyone,” remarked senior Heather Mindler. “They all went out there and worked hard to earn their first place medal!”

5th and 6th grade Cheer team

Cedar Springs 5th & 6th grade Cheer team.

JV cheer

The Cedar Springs JV Cheer Team.

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