Athletes of the Week: Robert C. Byrd Cheer Earns Back-to-Back State Titles
Is there anything that could possibly be tougher than winning one State Championship? Yeah, winning two!
"It's just like how much we work because a lot of people don't even get the chance to go to states. It was a great opportunity that we've got to go two times now," Robert C. Byrd junior flyer Jennifer Tassos said.
"There's no answer or feeling," RCB Cheerleader said. "It's just excitement. I mean, we've been working for it since August. Hard work pays off."
The RCB Cheerleading squad pulled off the unthinkable and came away with their second consecutive State Championship in Charleston.
"It is very amazing. It's kind of unbelievable. But we had a lot of faith and confidence in these kids. This is the best coach right here," RCB Cheerleading Head Coach Karen Thomason said, referring to Assistant Coach Jennifer Banko. "We complement each other very well," Banko said.
Winning the state title may not even be the most impressive part. Byrd pulled it off with zero seniors on the squad, which means the future holds bright for the ladies from Clarksburg.
"This team, since we're so young we had to work extra hard because we have no seniors and we have one junior. So we all had to come together as a team to all be leaders. So we all had to work extra hard not just to win, but to come together," RCB Cheerleaders said.
"If you had any other team in the state that would win a State Championship without one senior on it and one upperclassman, that itself is a story. So if they stay focused and they continue to develop their skills, which are already pretty good, then we have a pretty bright future, I think," Banko said.
The fact of the matter is that cheerleading is a lot of work. If you don't believe me, ask one of them.
"We work very hard, like six days per week, three hours each day or maybe more than that. So we work really, really hard," Tassos said.
"We haven't had a weekend to ourselves where we had not been practicing. We're talking four, five or six hours on Saturdays. I feel like it's becoming more respected. More parents are seeing the sacrifice that their kids are making," Banko said.
"I think it's going to take a little bit of time for people to take notice," Thomason said. "But I think things are coming around."
No need for that. When you win two State Titles, people will be forced to notice. But if you ask them, they're not satisfied with two.
"Three," Thomason said. "Five," Banko shouted.
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