Jan. 11, 2012
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ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - As one of the nation's top spirit squads once again gets ready for Nationals this weekend at ESPN's Wide World of Sports, UCF junior cheerleader Morgan Ferrell provides Knights fans with a behind-the-scenes look at what it's like preparing for the most exciting weekend of the season with her first blog entry.
By: Morgan Ferrell
It's officially the week of nationals! Classes started Monday, time is flying by and the pressure is mounting. Only three practices left! On Monday, spirits were higher than normal when the alumni cheerleaders came to watch us perform at practice. After a very focused warm-up, we delivered an energetic performance and nailed the routine! I could feel the excitement radiate from the audience and my team members as they cheered! Until that moment, we hadn't experienced an atmosphere booming with that much energy and confidence.
After practice, coach Gooch handed out UCF logo stickers to everyone who hit the routine individually. It's a reward system that started a few days ago. Each practice we throw the routine three times. Each person has an opportunity to earn a sticker for each time they perform flawlessly. We then place the stickers on a yellow construction worker hat, which symbolizes hard work and our team's blue-collar mentality. The goal is to completely cover the hat before nationals.
It's gratifying to see the hat almost entirely covered. It is a very visual reminder that success is never handed to you, it is earned. With the competition quickly approaching, it felt great to show our coaches and alumni that we take pride in maintaining the UCF legacy with our "hard-hat" mentality. I am convinced that if we continue to push ourselves a little more each and every practice, we will put on a great show at Nationals!