JV Cheer and Dance kickoff their seasons after a year and a half on and off.

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At Livermore High School sports are a big deal. However there are two sports that do not get enough attention. These are the Cheer and Dance Teams. 

All of the coaches take time out of their day to come and share their love for the sports. Showing off their dance and stunt moves, and helping to train a new generation of dancers and stunters. 

Long awaited, after the last year and a half of the seasons being on and off due to COVID-19, the cheer and dance teams are finally getting back to a regular season.

The cheerleaders practice 6 hours a week,  two hours every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursdays the Freshman Football Team has their games where the JV cheerleaders perform the halftime show. The JV and Varsity cheerleaders all perform on Fridayś at their respective games. 

Amber Jessup, the JV cheer coach, has been coaching for over 20 years. She has coached all ages from youth to all star teams, starting herself when she was just 16 years old. She says “In middle school I was headed down the wrong path, and being a part of the “cheer family” helped turn that around and changed my life.” One of the reasons she became a coach was so she can create a space like that for others. Some of the girls say “Coach Amber makes it a safe place.” 

She loves watching cheer competition routines on Instagram to get ideas for the halftime show. “When something pops out to me I think of how we could incorporate it on our team.” Amber works on her routine during her breaks at work, sitting there doing counts and making the routines. 

She says that the team is working on being even more energetic than they already are, adding in more stunts in between everything. 

Her favorite thing about coaching is watching the girls fall in love with the sport. She says “Don’t be afraid to ask about it (cheer) and come tryout.” Everyone is welcomed on the cheer team. 

Co-coach with Amber is America Peralta, coaching for her first time this year, coming straight from LHS cheer herself. “I’ve been wanting to coach for a while,” she says. She knew that once she graduated she would miss the sport a tremendous amount.  So she made the decision to lend the coaches a hand here at LHS. 

America is most excited for all the halftimes. One that they are working hard on putting together is the Homecoming performance with the Varsity team. She loves showing the girls new things about a sport she loves. “It’s honestly an awesome thing to get to teach someone everything you know about a sport you love. The excitement on an athlete’s face when they learn a new skill is just awesome to me.

The dance team practices on Tuesdays from 7:15 pm – 9:15pm and on Fridays from 5:30pm – 7:30pm. Performing at football games, rallies, basketball games, hometown events, such as the Christmas parade and (hopefully this year)the rodeo parade. They also compete with the USA (United Spirit Association) and some local dance competitions.

Vanessa Castro, who has been the LHS Dance Coach for four years, says  “(Dance) can be used in many aspects of life. For example: discipline, stress relief, and time management.” She says that there is no greater good than helping young adults through their next phase in their lives.  

When asked how she remains so dedicated Coach Castro responded that she draws inspiration by watching her team interact with each other.  The girls on the team create their own choreography  “And of course we also bring in choreographers, who also inspire the girls and bring in some great pieces…together we fine tune it and make sure it is memorable for the crowd.” The girls are now finishing up their football routines and getting ready for competitions they will be participating in, come January and February.

“My favorite thing about coaching is getting to watch the team mature throughout the years and see how much they love and care about each other,” said Coach Castro.

The cheer and dance team are both the most excited for their upcoming routines at the next home games.