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Portola Pilot

The student news site of Portola High School

Portola Pilot

The student news site of Portola High School

Portola Pilot

Portola Pep Squad Goes ‘Full Out’ at CIF State Competition

Portola+Pep+Squad%E2%80%99s+competition+team+poses+after+the+CIF+competition.+The+team+felt+it+was+important+to+boost+their+energy+when+entering+the+competition.+%E2%80%9CWe+just+made+sure+that+the+energy+was+up+and+that+everyone+was+like%2C+%E2%80%98No+matter+what%2C+were+excited+to+be+here%2C+and+were+excited+to+compete+for+this+team%2C%E2%80%99%E2%80%9D+co-captain%2C+flier+and+senior+Gabriela+Sarabosing+said.+%E2%80%9CAnd+whatever+happens%2C+happens+as+long+as+we+know+that+were+putting+in+our+best.%E2%80%9D
Courtesy of Evyn Kingsley
Portola Pep Squad’s competition team poses after the CIF competition. The team felt it was important to boost their energy when entering the competition. “We just made sure that the energy was up and that everyone was like, ‘No matter what, we’re excited to be here, and we’re excited to compete for this team,’” co-captain, flier and senior Gabriela Sarabosing said. “And whatever happens, happens as long as we know that we’re putting in our best.”

Portola Pep Squad placed fourth out of 15 teams at the CIF state competition in Riverside, CA on Jan. 21. Preparation for the competition began in October, according to Coach Michele Correll. After tryouts, team members prepared their performance whilst also cheering at games.

“We have to work up to the skill level,” Correll said. “So going from October, month one, to January, three months later, just putting in all that time and effort. Then on top of this, these girls are also on sidelines in other games. So trying to fit everything into when we practice, it’s just a lot on these athletes.”

The routine itself — which is comprised of tumbling, jumps and multiple pyramids — was first performed at the USAA competition the weekend before the CIF competition. Despite the effort of the team, the USAA competition was not successful, according to co-captain, backspot and junior Karina Mori.

“It kind of motivated us to work harder,” Mori said. “And since CIF is [bigger] and it looks [better] in our vision, we were like, ‘we have to be better by then.’”

The team put in additional effort leading up to the CIF competition Correll said. The team had additional morning and afternoon practices, according to co-captain, flier and senior Gabriela Sarabosing.

“I think firstly, the biggest trait that they had was team camaraderie,” Correll said. “You could see when they stepped onto that first warm up mat that they’re there as a team, they’re working together.”

Their additional effort ultimately paid off as they were able to improve.

“When [Coach Correll] got to fourth and read our name, everyone was screaming and shouting, and we were all jumping up and down,” Sarabosing said. “Because it definitely was such a big improvement from last weekend to be almost second to last out of six people and then being fourth in a big group.”

With the success at the state competition, the team looks to continue improving for the national competition at the Anaheim Convention Center on Feb. 16, according to Correll. At the national competition, 32 teams will compete for the top 10 spots to advance to the second day of evaluation, according to Mori.

“My hope for this year is we definitely want to make it to day two right?” Correll said. “If we can be top 10 of 13 teams that would be incredible. But my baseline is I want the girls to feel good about what they put on the mat. So even if we put on an amazing performance and we still don’t go to day two, I will still be happy.”

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About the Contributor
Shaina Taebi, Backpage Editor
Shaina Taebi is the Backpage Editor for her third year in the Portola Pilot. For her final year she is excited to spend class time drawing more editorial cartoons and hopefully writing some interesting stories. Beyond the classroom she is most likely rewatching Hearstopper, screaming along to a Harry Styles song, or getting a headache from oil paint fumes.
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