Fall Sports Focus: Sideline Cheer

Coach Kyla Stern is having a wonderful fall coaching the largest group of young women that she’s seen in her time at Allendale High School. With dedicated athletes working hard to learn and achieve new techniques together, Coach Stern is seeing growth and teamwork push boundaries and reach new heights as the girls work to have cheer perceived as a sport.

“One of my favorite things about this team is their love for the sport. They are all so dedicated to being great and making the team the best it can be. It makes it so easy to coach when the girls share the same love for the sport as I do,” gushed Coach Stern.

The leadership of the seniors has played and continues to play a big role on the team when it comes to teaching and encouraging their teammates. She notes that Justice Jones is a young women who models kindness and integrity, adding that Justice, “…works great with everyone on the team.”

Sydni Bennett is another senior who leads by example, helping to teach the younger girls and sharing in their successes. These two young women are supported by sophomore Heather LeBrecque who is already rising to the top as an up-and-coming leader. Each member of the team, however, has a special role to play and is valued deeply for her unique contribution.

As all of our coaches would attest, the team could not be the group they are without the committed support of its parents. Tina Jones and Jodi Hankis-Jensen serve as booster reps, with Tina additionally assisting with fundraisers, shirt ordering, and other miscellaneous items. Parents involved with sideline cheer also willingly serve at the concession stands and help to prepare snacks for the girls to enjoy during halftime.

“I have great parent support! I am so fortunate to have so many parents involved. They make my life so much easier and it’s great for the girls when their parents are there to support them! … It’s great knowing that if I ever need help with anything, so many of the parents are right there willing to help!” said Coach Stern.

Kyla feels blessed to have gotten to know each of these girls over the years, and marks this season as her first with a group of young women that have been with her throughout their entire high school career. Working alongside one another for four years has given them a special bond and commitment to the whole.

“We all are on the same page as far as goals and what we want to accomplish. They are always asking me for new challenges and for me to push them harder. I am so lucky to have each and everyone of these girls!”

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