By Morgan Cook
NBHS – “Nine together, nine forever” is the North Buncombe Varsity cheerleaders’ saying for this cheerleading season. The saying is appropriate since there are nine members of the team.
On January 1st of next year, the North Buncombe Varsity cheerleading team will be the only team in Western North Carolina ever to appear at the Citrus Bowl. The Citrus Bowl will be held in Orlando, Florida. The group, coached by Holly Griffin and Kristen Nunez, will be facing the most significant event of their careers so far.
Leah Douglas, a freshmen member of the team, stated, “I’m most excited about spending time with my team and performing for something that might be a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
The team found out about this opportunity through the Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA), an organization that Coach Griffin has been a part of for a decade now. The organization recently held a stunting clinic at Lenoir-Rhyne University, where the team received a Superior Trophy from the UCA camps this summer. This award qualified them to cheer at the Citrus Bowl pregame show in January.
When asked about their pride for the team’s accomplishment, Coach Griffin and Coach Nunez replied, “They are a small and young team, but they work hard and will step up to any challenge we set before them. Their team dynamics are more like a family.”
Most of the girls on this team have cheered with each other for multiple years, but they are always excited to get more members. Kylie Cook, a sophomore member of the group, stated, “When new people join the team, it’s like getting new friends and family to get close with.”
The entire team is buzzing with excitement for both the opportunity to cheer at the bowl as well as a fun trip to Disney to celebrate their achievement.
Eden Southerland, team co-captain and senior, is excited to use the trip as a bonding experience. She stated, “I am excited about getting closer with my team and riding rides at Disney with them.”
However, this trip is not free and the team has already begun raising money through fundraisers. They need to raise $13,000 by November 1st and have turned to the community to help support them in this endeavor.
The team has set up a GoFundMe donations page that can be found by searching “NBHS Varsity Cheer is Citrus Bowl bound” on gofundme.com. The team is also hosting a variety of fundraisers.
If you are interested in participating see a cheerleader or go to the Cheerleading tab under “Fall Sports” on the North Buncombe High School website.