Talented Tigers excel this year

The Newtonite

by Hilary Brumberg
When people hear “cheerleading,” many think of fresh-faced girls with short dresses, high ponytails and wide smiles shaking their pompoms and jumping as they cheer on their school’s football players.
People merely assume half-time is these spirited girls’ time to shine as they take center stage to belt out a cute rhyme about why their school is the best and execute a few rudimentary gymnastic moves.
However, in reality, cheerleading is much, much more.
These performances during football games are just practice for this school’s cheerleading squad, according to senior Domenique DiDino, a captain with seniors Katja Hamler and Micayla Ross.
Like all other varsity sports, cheerleading performs at competitions against other schools.
For the first time since 2009, the Tigers advanced to States, which were to have been Sunday at Shrewsbury High School.
“It should be close,” DiDino said before the meet. “There are a lot of good teams going to States from Division I.”
In the Regional competition Sunday, Nov. 13, the Tigers placed fourth out of 13 teams with a score of 179.5, trailing top-scoring Whitman-Hanson Regional High School by seven points.
DiDino said while the squad excelled in previous problem-areas, it had trouble where it is usually strong.
“Leading up to Regionals, we worked on voice, enthusiasm and dance because those are the areas that weren’t looking so good in past competitions. In Regionals, we got amazing scores for those, however tumbling and stunting, our better areas, were affected negatively.”
The Tigers obtained a ticket to Regionals by placing first in Bay States, the league competition, Tuesday, Nov. 2 at Braintree High School. Not only did they exceed their goal score by 1.5 points, but they outdid their rival and host.
DiDino said this was surprising because the Wamps “usually come out really well.”
Before Bay States, the Tigers participated in three invitational competitions, placing first twice and second once.
Adrianne Callahan, a coach with Stephanie Chmura and Amanda Costa, said, “This season’s team has the most talent and heart of any of the last five teams I have coached.”