Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article stated that the A-D-M cheer squad placed fifth in 2015, when they had placed third.
On Saturday, Nov. 4, the Adel-DeSoto-Minburn cheerleading squad competed at the State Cheerleading Competition. For the third year in a row, the Tigers placed in the top five in the Class 3A division.
In 2015, the Tigers placed fifth, which was the highest the cheer squad had placed in many years; until 2016 when they placed fourth. The Tigers repeated last season, and finished in fourth place in the cheer and dance division of the competition.
Coach Alec Craigmile talked about how it felt to have the team finish so well for the third year in a row.
“Placing in 2015 was a huge deal for our program as it was the first time we had placed in a number of years (rumored 20 years, not 100 percent sure though),” Craigmile said. “Placing in the top five for the third year in a row is an amazing accomplishment. We went through so many obstacles this season that sometimes it was hard to see the light at the end. This team though, I can’t even begin to describe how proud I am of each and every one of them for pushing through and overcoming everything that was handed to them. Everyday they would come to practice with a positive attitude and ready to work. All I asked them to do the day of the competition was do walk onto the mat, give 100 percent effort and have fun. They did exactly that and their hard work truly paid off, I couldn’t be any more proud.”
The Tigers began working on their choreography in July and began practicing everyday once school started. From the beginning, the team had plenty of goals in mind, according to Craigmile.
“We had lots of goals, both individual and team goals set at the beginning of the season,” Craigmile said, “whether they were to have higher jumps, more tumbling as a team, or to be able to smile the whole time during the routine. The girls mostly agreed that this was one of the most intense and difficult routines that we have ever done, so keeping a smile and performing it well was really big.”
The Tigers normally compete in the Triton Challenge held by Iowa Central Community College each year, but this year, decided to focus more on State.
“Traditionally, in the past, we have done the Triton Cheer Challenge, however, this year it was not something we could make work since we were faced with so many challenges this season. We just would not have been strong enough as a team to compete at the time. We spent the time that we would have been prepping and cleaning our routine for Triton, working on key skills in our routine like the pyramid and elite stunt sequence.”
Although the Tigers’ competition season may be over, they can be seen cheering on their classmates during the winter season.