The dynasty continues for the Phoenix Central School District’s cheerleading team, which took home its 13th consecutive Section III Class B title during a recent competition.
Surrounded by parents, school officials and friends, the Firebirds scored a 97.3 during its championship-winning routine held at Oriskany High School.
While the final routine proved to be a success, the journey to the title was marked by hard work, dedication and overcoming adversity, according to cheerleading coach Jackie Guglielmo.
“This championship is a reflection of all the behind-the-scenes work the team has done all season long,” Guglielmo said. “They are very talented, they work hard, and they deserved this. It’s a huge accomplishment.”
For senior captains Haley Davie and Abigail Ewald, the banner season was worth the countless hours of practice.
“We put a lot of work into it and we really pushed for it all season long,” Davie said. “We nailed our final routine, which was a relief because we had such a bad warmup right before that. But, we got together, talked it out, and everything just clicked.”
Things have been clicking for Phoenix cheerleading teams for more than a decade, and Athletic Director Jim Drancsak expects that tradition to continue.
“Phoenix doesn’t have an ‘average cheerleading group.’ There is such a high level of commitment and effort,” he said. “They work so hard and I would expect Phoenix will continue to produce one of the best cheerleading teams around.”