7/18/2017 3:35:00 PM Noblesville cheer raises the bar
Last year the Noblesville High School varsity cheerleaders won the Millers' first state championship title since 1997.
This season the girls are back at it practicing multiple times a week at White River Elementary. The squad, which consists of varsity, junior varsity, and freshmen teams, is led by head coach Crystal Scott.
"We know we kind of shocked some people last year when we won. We're trying to get in the mind set of, 'that was last year, nobody cares that you won because everyone is vying for the same thing again this year,'" Scott said.
Noblesville is competing against local rivals Fishers, Carmel, HSE, and Westfield as well as teams from all over Indiana at the semi-state level.
"The mentality this year is to continue to raise our own bar," Scott said. "There are a lot of talented teams in Northern and Southern Indiana...and some of the best talent is coming out of Hamilton County."
After achieving their goal of bringing home a state title, the cheerleaders are focused on upping their routine difficulty while maintaining the solid execution that allowed them to call themselves champions.
Along with the athletic goals set by the team this season, Coach Scott also tries to teach the girls how to be successful off the mats.
"My personal favorite is being the mentor to this high school age. It is a sport, and you're teaching them skills, but I really push the bigger life-long lessons: working hard to achieve a goal, having success when you work hard for that."
Noblesville took the title from Fishers, who had won the previous three years.
"Each season we try not to focus on who we're up against. We focus on ourselves. The scoresheet will take care of itself if we've done our job," Scott said.
Five seniors are returning to the squad this year with hopes of claiming back to back state victories: Megan Howard, Sydney Bowen, Serena Morris, Lauren Murray, and McKenzie Rajski. Each one has a different story of how they ended up a state champion, and each one has taken away different tokens from their Noblesville cheer career.
Sydney Bowen: "My favorite thing is probably the friendships you make. We really become a family by the end of the season."
Serena Morris: "I like seeing how we start out and where we end and seeing how each individual grows."
Lauren Murray: "I like that we have to work so hard to get where we want to be. You have to work for it."
McKenzie Rajski: "I like seeing all the hard work pay off and seeing the growth throughout the year."
The squad will start its trek toward state later this fall, but in the meantime, you can catch them tumbling in the local gyms and cheering on the Millers on the sidelines on Friday nights.