This past Sunday, the Bedford High School Varsity Cheer team qualified to compete in the Massachusetts School Administrators Association (MSAA) State Championship.
According to the team, the path to the state competition has not been easy, but their hard work personally and together has not only bonded them as a team but lifted their performance.
Head Coach Nikkie Melanson said, “I am so incredibly proud of the athletes who competed at regionals and our DCL in order to get us [to States]. This is a team that people have doubted and questioned for so many years, but their potential for greatness has always been right under the surface. They have been working almost five days a week to create a routine that they are proud to showcase at competitions.”
Junior Captain Stephanie Kezima echoed the coach’s feelings, “I honestly could not be any prouder than I am currently with the team. The last months and especially the last weeks have been filled with pain, tears, injuries, and countless hours of hard work and it is finally paying off.”
Junior Katie Schmidt agreed, “It is amazing to see how far the Bedford cheer team has come. This team’s journey this season has been nothing more than dedication and hard work. The countless hours of practice and preparation is what has brought us to the competition this weekend.”
The Bucs earned third place in the Small School Coed division at the MSAA Fall Cheerleading North Regional Championship behind Triton Regional and Ipswich High Schools. Bedford earned a final score of 72.4, just one point ahead of fourth place Malden Catholic High School to guarantee a spot in the state finals. Salem High School rounded out the Small Coed division, fifth in the field of nearly four dozen teams that competed in various divisions at regionals on Sunday at Billerica Memorial High School.
Sophomore Maddie Lembo said, “I am beyond proud of each and every person who is a part of our team. We all have put in so much work and effort to get to where we are now and it is amazing. We have come so far from past years and seasons and it truly would not be possible without each and every cheerleader.”
The team will travel to Worcester State University this Sunday for the MSAA State Finals. Sophomore Olivia Szablowski added to her teammates’ enthusiasm about their achievements and the journey this season, saying, “I am so excited to be heading off to States as we have worked countless hours to become a team that I am grateful to hit the mat with.” She added, “I’m really proud of how the team has grown, not just as athletes, but as friends. It has brought me nothing but joy to watch my fellow teammates grow in the sport.”
Kezima added, “Being a captain of BHS cheer has been a dream of mine since I was a little girl and I am ecstatic that my first season with the title is filled with pure greatness and such talented people.”
Schmidt said. “I cannot thank the team and coach enough for being like family to me, I am so excited that I get to perform one last time this season with them at states! Go, Bucs!”
Melanson invited the public to cheer on the Bucs athletes this weekend, “They are giving everything they have to each performance. I am so excited for them to be able to perform at States representing their school, their town, and me as their coach, well. If you get a chance, come and see them perform at Worcester State University at 3:15 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2023.”
Schedule, maps, and ticketing information can be found here: https://msaa.net/wp-content/uploads/2023/11/F23-STATES-Order-of-Appearance.pdf