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BGHS cheer squad soars to 4th state title

Published February 7, 2023

Credit the coaching. Credit the dedication and skill of team members who have cheered competitively since childhood. Credit the “newbies” who blended into the team and tapped into potential they didn’t know existed. 

It all adds up to Buffalo Grove High School’s coed cheerleading team earning a state title - the school’s fourth in 10 years – at the Illinois High School Association finals in Bloomington on Saturday. All four have come under the guidance of head coach Jeffrey Siegal, who, as the season began, wasn’t sure what to expect from this year’s team.

“We had so many new people,” said Siegal, who calls the Mid Suburban League the state’s best and most competitive cheer conference. “We had a large number of football players who joined the team and had just come off of a long football season, with playoffs. To watch them come together as a team – forging relationships and watching out for each other – was special.”

For senior Sarah Mora, the team’s title performance in Bloomington capped years of hard work and resulted from a squad on which “every single person is completely committed.”

“I am incredibly excited,” she said. “It’s hard to process. We worked so hard. We practiced all over winter break. There’s always injuries and stuff, and it’s hard to push through that. This is the best journey I’ve ever been on and ending like this – winning state – is like icing on cake.”

Senior Jack Cadre is among  the football players who decided to try cheerleading for the first time. He called the season – from being welcomed by the team and learning the program’s rich history to developing new skills and finally winning a state title – “surreal.” His takeaway? “Try new things.”

Siegal, who also coached five Elk Grove High School cheer squads to state championships, said everyone involved deserves a share of the title. “I coach with phenomenal people. We have the best administration that really supports us. What a great feeling to (win) and see the smiles on kids’ faces.”