Mountain View cheerleaders recount London experience - The Explorer: Sports

Mountain View cheerleaders recount London experience

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Posted: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 4:00 am | Updated: 1:42 pm, Wed Jan 30, 2013.

London isn’t exactly the first place most high schoolers would spend their Christmas break, but for cheerleading seniors Tiana McNeely and Caroline Balsino that’s exactly what they did.

“Being able to go across the world and do what we did was really cool,” said Balsino. “We learned a lot. Every single day we’d learn something new and we’d freak about it and just tell everyone.”

Both girls started cheer at a young age and were involved in cheerleading clinics, Pop Warner and the Tucson Cheer Academy. They are the only two seniors left from their freshmen team at Mountain View High School.

McNeely and Balsino were selected to perform in the London New Year’s Day Parade by the Universal Cheerleading Association (UCA) last June. UCA provides training camps for high school and college cheerleaders. After much hard work and the support of their families, both girls, were able to afford the eight-day trip.

While in London, the girls toured the museums, took in the sights and on the second to last day, performed in the London Parade with an estimated 1,000 other cheerleaders. This by far was the most exciting part of the trip for the two seniors. 

“People would see us and point and say, ‘They’re Americans! They’re Americans,’” said McNeely. “We felt like celebrities.”

Mountain View’s head varsity cheer coach Sydnee Friedman said the Balsino and McNeely deserved this opportunity.

“I am so proud of them,” said Friedman. “They have such a drive and dedication.”

Balsino and McNeely hope to stay in cheer after they graduate from high school. Balsino hopes to tryout for UCA and pursue a career in the medical field. McNeely said her biggest hope is to tryout for the University of Alabama, but she would consider the University of Arizona cheer team as well.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 30

Boys Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View at Haven Golf Course

Ironwood Ridge, Buena, Catalina at Rincon (Dell Urich)

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at CDO

Maricopa at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Vista Grande

Poston Butte at Catalina Foothills

San Miguel at Pusch Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Wednesday, October 1

Girls Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View vs. Ironwood Ridge (Omnu Tucson National)

CDO, Sunnyside at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Sabino at Catalina Foothills

Cross Country (4:30 p.m.)

Ironwood Ridge, Sahuarita at Flowing Wells (Columbus Park)

Marana, St. Gregory at Catalina Foothills

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

CDO at Ironwood Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills at CDO

JV Football (6.p.m.)

Marana at Maricopa

Salpointe at Mountain View

CDO at Catalina Foothills

Thursday, October 2

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Mountain View, St. Gregory’s, Pusch Ridge at Marana

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Poston Butte

Catalina Foothills at Flowing Wells

Pusch Ridge at Willcox

Varsity Football (7p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills @ CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Rincon

Friday, October 3

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Girls Vollyeball (all day)

CDO, Catalina Foothills at Falcon Invitational

Cross Country

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Desert Twilight Festival

Varsity Footbal (7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at San Tan Valley

Saturday, October 4

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Swimming (all day)

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Brophy/Xavier Swim Invitational

Girls Volleyball (4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Desert Christian

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