Cheer squad gets big boost


RAH-CRUITING Freshmen Keke Moore (left) and Isabella Saeturn listen as cheer coach and former Raiderette Roxanne Pringle explains a summer camp the new cheer squad will attend.

After a difficult year for Fremont’s spirit squad, there is finally something to cheer about.

That’s because Fremont is going to have a new cheerleading coordinator — a spirited former Raiderette — after a semester without a solid cheerleading team.

The coordinator, Roxanne Pringle, visited Fremont Federation advisories on Feb. 10 to recruit students to the squad.

After a semester of frustrations, Pringle was welcomed warmly by students.

There were more than two dozen girls who started out the year practicing chants, cheers and dances, many of them enthusiastic freshmen. But the team fell through when cheerleaders had difficulty getting uniforms or a cheerleading coordinator without too many other responsibilities.

During the beginning of the year, the cheerleading team was overseen by Athletic Director Darlene Miller, who was also the coach of the girls volleyball team.

“She had too much going on already,” said former cheerleader Briajanae James, a College Preparatory & Architecture Academy sophomore.

Miller said she did not want to comment for this article.

James said lack of uniforms also contributed to people quitting the team.

Cheerleaders were also told to either pay for their own $200 uniform or fundraise by selling popcorn and Lady Tiger shirts. But, according to James, the fundraising effort was unsuccessful.

Former cheerleader Tilinda Martin, a Media Academy freshman, agrees that the lack of uniforms was a problem.

“Every other school had uniforms but we didn’t have uniforms. They wanted us to wear hand-me-downs for games,” said Martin. “That’s when hecka people started quitting.”

Without clear leadership and no uniforms, James saw the team falling apart.

“I was one of the only people left,” said James. “We didn’t have uniforms and it was basically us kids making up dances.”

Just a few weeks ago, however, after-school coordinator Roxanne Isaguirre hired Pringle to help the team this semester get ready for next year.

“She is originally from the Bay and has worked with other schools in Oakland,” said Isaguirre about the new instructor. “We have the potential to bring a really strong program.”

Isaguirre says the new coordinator was a competitive cheerleader in high school and throughout college. Pringle will be recruiting students still interested in being part of the cheerleading team and will start holding practices in March.

“They will have a brand new routine, new choreography,” said Isaguirre.

According to Isaguirre, the girls who join the team will be practicing during the spring and possibly sent to cheerleading camp during the summer. They would also cheer at school events but the emphasis would be on training for next year.

Having a cheeleading team may boost school spirit, says Leadership coordinator Nidya Baez.

“If we had cheerleaders, people would be more excited to go to the games,” Baez said. “Students would feel more included and proud of the school.”

Baez said she hopes the cheerleaders will raise money and “really be a team, to be united and work with Leadership to organize events.”

Meanwhile, James is looking forward to being able to cheer, dance and compete against other schools.

She also believes getting a good start this year for next year is important to having a successful cheerleading squad.

“We need to start practicing early and really fundraise,” said James.