New cheer coaches emphasize the importance of enhancing school spirit


Madison Bonadurer

The Don Lugo Cheerleaders are showing their support for our football team by chanting and waving their pom-poms in the air. “I want our cheerleaders to focus on FUN, especially with the tough 2020 year,” said Coach Elizabeth.

Sophia Vasquez, Features Editor

After lacking the presence of a head coach since last school year, Don Lugo’s cheerleading program has finally acquired two new Co-advisor coaches, Elizabeth Castaneda and Nicole Shue, for the 2021 – 2022 school year. 

Irene Hensley, to whom many refer to her as “Grandma”, had made the difficult decision to retire as head coach for our cheerleading program last school year. When asking Castaneda how she feels about stepping into such large shoes to fulfill, she acknowledged Coach Hensley’s unparalleled legacy, claiming that “ I could only hope to be as loved as she was by all students, staff, and parents.” Coach Elizabeth and Coach Shue are surely thrilled to inherit such a great program that Hensley had sculpted for nearly 16 years. 

We are both passionate about cheerleading, and so we were very excited to become apart of the Don Lugo family once again.

— Coach Elizabeth Castaneda


As the season is well underway, our new coaches are emphasizing the importance of enthusiasm and school spirit in order to support sports teams and the student body as a whole. Some goals for the new year include “ plenty of involvement at school rallies and events to show great leadership, alongside the  addition of more performances to showcase their skills,” reports Castaneda, who seems to be very eager for the cheer squad to reach newfound heights.  A consensus was agreed upon that if and when the cheerleaders gain more strength and endurance, both coaches would love to implement stunts and lifts into the girls’ routines! 

Coach Elizabeth and Coach Shue strongly believe in the power of ENERGY, and that when coaches are able to maintain strong levels of energy during practices, games, and events, this can influence cheerleaders to later reciprocate this dynamic enthusiasm during their performances. Jade Mantilla, a senior cheerleader for Don Lugo, points out that these coaches have a “unique passion for cheerleading, allowing them to boost our confidence, improve our work performance, and build effective team communication, ” ultimately displaying the positive attributes that both can bring to the table ! 

The next Varsity football home game just so happens to be Milkcan on September 17th at 7PM. Make sure to stop by the field so that you can watch our very own Don Lugo cheerleaders rally up the crowd with spirit and ENERGY!