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December 28, 2013 - 2:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, cheerleading, Batavia HS, VA Hospital.

Batavia High School cheerleaders visited the VA Hospital this morning to visit with residents and perform their basketball cheers. One resident told the girls, "this is what he fought for" while thanking them for their visit.

Information and photo submitted by Justine Bonarigo.

December 28, 2013 - 11:47am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Sports, high school sports, cheerleading.

The DellaPenna family is pretty certain this has never happened before in the history of Batavia basketball: Two sisters, on opposite sides of the court, cheering for their respective teams, when Batavia High School and Notre Dame meet Monday in the championship game of the Lions Club Tournament at GCC. Danielle is a senior at Batavia and Gabrielle is a freshman at ND.

Information and photo submitted by Tim Tucker.

October 22, 2013 - 10:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Bulldawgs, Sports, cheerleading.

Photo and information submitted by Sherri Wahr.

The cheer squad for the Batavia Bulldawgs youth football program did very well Sunday at the Niagrara Orleans Football Association cheer competition in Lyndonville. The beginners took third, minis 2nd and JV placed 2nd for cheer and 1st for routine. The girls also captured the Spirit Cup.  The JV team scored the most points in the division to win Grand Champion, with varsity coming in third in its division.

"I'm so incredibly proud of each and everyone one of them," Cheer Director Sherri Wahr said. "They came out and gave it all they had and it really paid off."

October 16, 2013 - 11:27am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Sports, cheerleading.

In their first competition of the year, the Batavia HS varsity cheerleading team took second place at the Brockport Spirit Fest over the weekend. Kayle Corp placed third in the individual competition. The sectional competition is Oct. 26. (Photo and information submitted by Justine Bonarigo.)

September 29, 2013 - 10:38am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Sports, cheerleading, ebla.

The Elba Lancers cheer squad unveiled a new routine during half-time of the Elba/Byron-Bergen vs. Notre Dame game Saturday.

The routine features more acrobatics than I've seen from a high school cheer squad before.

Cheer Coach Kate Engle said her cousin Jackie Borrelli, now a cheer captain at Niagara University who cheered for Northeast Elite, conducted a two-day cheer camp for the Elba team and taught the girls the new routine.

Saturday was the first time they performed it in public.

Rachel Wannike is Elba's captain this year and she's featured in the flyer toss. Tabitha Fuller, a seventh-grader, is featured in a series flips during a pyramid (unfortunately, my camera slipped out of focus during this part of the routine). 

Engle said the squad is pretty young, with only one senior member and five juniors, three sophomores, seven freshman and a seventh-grader.

The girls will use the routine Oct. 13 at the Brockport Spiritfest and, of course, during sectionals competition later in October at RIT.

To purchase prints of these photos, click here.

August 19, 2013 - 10:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Sports, cheerleading, Batavia HS.

Heading home tonight, I came upon these three young ladies out on Ganson Avenue practicing their cheer routine. Tryouts for the JV cheer squad at Batavia High School are this week and they're leaving nothing to chance. Pictured are Taylor Smith, Mikey Lullo and Chloe Rapone.

January 21, 2013 - 9:14am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Sports, cheerleading, Batavia HS.

The Batavia High School varsity basketball cheerleading squad took second place at the Monroe County Tournament held at Victor HS on Saturday.

Five teams participated in their competition.

Kayla Corp, Jessica Derefinko, Codie Grazioplene and Whitney Athoe received 2nd Team All County nominations.

The team will compete for a Section V title Feb. 23 at RIT.

Information and photo submitted by a reader.

October 22, 2012 - 7:12am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Sports, cheerleading, Batavia HS.

Photo and info submitted by Justine Bonarigo:

Batavia High School's varsity cheerleading squad placed first in the Co-Ed Division at Webster Schroeder Competition held Sunday. They will take on the sectional competition this Saturday at R.I.T. for the Class B division title.

The team includes: Samantha Saraceni (captain), Codie Grazioplene (captain), Macey McCulley, Whitney Athoe, James Murphy, Megan Wilcox, Miranda Reed, Heather Lewis, Makaela Kitcho, Katie Garlock, Danielle DellaPenna, Kayla Corp, Alexandria Ernst, Allison Smith, Teiona Kemp and Alex Rebman. Coached by Marianne Sallome and Justine Bonarigo.

July 15, 2011 - 3:52pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, Sports, cheerleading.

Cheer Camp, sponsored by the Batavia Bulldawgs Youth Football League, is going to be held from 9:30 to 11:30 Saturday morning, July 30, at Kibbe Park. Drop-off starts at 9 at the check-in table.

Cost is $15. Participants must be between 6 and 12 years of age. Birth certificate is required to register.

Registration is 6 to 8 tonight and also from 9 to 11 a.m. tomorrow at Batavia City Centre. To register by mail, send check or money order no later than July 23 to:

Batavia Bulldawgs Football

Atten: Cheer Camp

7 Highland Park

Batavia, NY 14020

Regarding attire, each athlete should come dressed and ready to play. Please wear workout apparel, including T-shirt, shorts, socks and athletic shoes or cleats. NO JEWELRY.

There will be plenty of water but kids are welcome to bring their own drinks.

This two-hour camp will teach the basics of cheerleading. It will include stunts, tumbling, jumps, cheers and dancing! The camp will be coached by Batavia High School Cheer Coach Krista Shamp, along with a few of her alumni cheerleaders and present varsity cheerleaders.

January 30, 2009 - 2:43pm
posted by Brian Hillabush in basketball, football, Sports, cheerleading.

 Cheerleading coaches have been saying for years that their sport is a contact sport and it has been proven to be one of the more dangerous sports in the past.

But the Wisconsin Supreme Court made a ruling this week on a case where a cheerleader was dropped while attempting a stunt in 2004.

She filed a lawsuit against the cheerleader that dropped her, causing a serious head injury.  The District Court ruled cheerleading was not a contact sport and ruled in favor of the cheerleader that was dropped.

The reasoning was that the competing teams do not have contact with each other.

So then it went to the Supreme Court and was overturned, making it a contact sport. That means that cheerleading is the same in Wisconsin as sports like football and basketball, where an athlete cannot sue another a member of your own team that causes a mistake that leads to an injury.

Many people disregard cheerleading as a sport, but with this decision many states could look to do the same, including New York. The Section 5 championships are on Feb. 22.

High school cheerleading is a contact sport and therefore its participants cannot be sued for accidentally causing injuries, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in a case being closely watched in the cheerleading world.


The court ruled that a former high school cheerleader cannot sue a teammate who failed to stop her fall while she was practicing a stunt. The court also said the injured cheerleader cannot sue her school district.

The National Cheer Safety Foundation said the decision is the first of its kind in the nation.


You can read the full Associated Press story here.

January 22, 2009 - 12:57am
posted by Brian Hillabush in batavia, Sports, cheerleading.


Many sports enthusiasts will tell you that cheerleading is not a sport. I disagree. 

These teams that you see on the sidelines at football games and at the ends of the court at basketball games, practice as much as those boys sports teams.

They don't have as many competitions, but so far Batavia is doing as well as possible, going 3-0 with just sectionals coming up on Feb. 22.

I showed up for a quick video shoot and some interviews and was able to see what a group of 20 cheerleaders together can be. Rookie coach Colleen Sullivan let them have fun, but when it was business time, it was business time.

Maybe that's why she's carrying on the tradition of Krista Shamp (used to be Glow), who turned Batavia cheerleading from an average squad into a county and sectional contender.

Heck, the squad won its fourth consecutive Monroe County League title on Sunday, beating second-place finisher East Irondequoit by a whopping 19 points. This comes after sectional championships in 2006 and 2007 and winning a first-ever fall title this year.

The squad has many personalities, ranging from some quiet girls to the boisterous senior Ana Spikes, who spent much of the end of last basketball season harassing me at games.

And then you have some true leaders, like Taylor Chmielowiec, whose brother Mike is one of the best basketball players in Batavia history. In chatting with her, I see a lot of similar personality traits. You can tell that a senior that has been on varsity for four years is a leader.

And then there is the new coach. 

Sullivan is a 2006 graduate of Batavia and was a football cheerleader for three years and basketball for four, all under Shamp, who is her neighbor, friend and mentor.

Sullivan also cheered for the Rochester Elite All Heat All-star team for two years.

She is currently in college and plans on running the program for as long as possible. 

She is 3-0 as a basketball cheerleading coach and can end up 4-0 if Batavia can win sectionals on Feb. 22 at RIT.

The entire roster is:Sasha Mruczek, Carissa Hyde, Madison Musilli, Taylor Chmielowiec, Jamie Turman, Sarah Stendts, Amanda Wormley, Kaley Falkowski, Jenna Sallome, Nikki Longhini, Petra Dietrich, Mari Geer, Alex Saraceni, Morgan SChlossel, Shawna Platt, Ana Spikes, Meghan Dwyer, Mikala Phillips, Leah Mruczek, Emily Sallome, Erika Bucci, Rachel Guppenberger, Natalie Tuites and Amy Schmitt.

January 12, 2009 - 9:15am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, Sports, schools, elba, Notre Dame, cheerleading.

Thanks to Lindsay Warner for submitting the following info on the Genesee Region League Cheerleading Tournament. We would love to have some color to go with this recap, so if you've got photos or video of this event, please post it to the site or contact me by e-mail so we can get it posted.

This weekend the JV and varsity cheerleading squads of the Genesee Region League gathered for their annual tournament. The competition travels to a different host school every few years and this year was the first for Elba High School and Michelle Merrill, their head coach.

The competition is run much like Winter Cheerleading Sectionals in that each team performs twice on the mat- once in a cheer only round and than again using the tradition cheer/dance routine. Grand Champion is determined by the squad who carries the highest total score. Since the inception of this competition that score belonged to the Holley Hawks- that is until this weekend.

Notre Dame has competed in this tournament for years and since Coach Lindsay (Rapone) Warner began coaching, grand champion was set as the ultimate goal. Holley High School, who is class B2 with nearly twice as many squad members, doesn’t make for much of a fair fight. This year Notre Dame has 14 members, 6 of which are new additions to the varsity team from last year. Nevertheless, Notre Dame was able to top Holley’s squad of 27 by 6 points in Round One which was very exciting for the squad as a last second decision was made to throw out the original cheer and learn a completely new one less than a week before the day’s performance. Overall the Irish stole grand champion by 4 points.

“My team was aware that the odds were against us in our goal to get grand champ. Holley is a great competitor and is well known for their themed routines, which this year, was Legally Blonde,” coach Lindsay Warner. The squad worked very hard to prepare for this competition, including two full practices before each of their games this week. The girls wanted it and their efforts certainly paid off. Assistant coach, Sheri Girvin, who is an alumni of Holley High School and former recipient of Grand Champion as a Hawk joined the Irish last year and was thrilled to receive Grand Champion again, now as a Notre Dame coach.

Squad captains are Stacy Squire, Kristen Francis, and Lauren DiFante, two of which are seniors and are very hopeful that this is just the start of a very successful final season for them at Notre Dame.


JV CHEER DI- Holley 177, Attica 173, Alexander 170; DII- Kendall 137
JV CHEER/DANCE DI- Holley 179,Attica 169, Alexander 156; DII Kendall 150
Varsity CHEER DI-Holley 184, Attica 179, Alexander 174, Oakfield 109; DII Notre Dame 190, Elba 173, Kendall 157, Lyndonville 150
Varsity CHEER/DANCE DII- Notre Dame 185, Kendall 166, Elba 164, Lyndonville 146

October 19, 2008 - 6:09am
posted by Brian Hillabush in batavia, football, Sports, cheerleading.

I am one of the few sports guys that will call cheerleading a sport, but I love hearing about these girls competing in what is a difficult, and dangerous sporting event.

One of the best sectional championships - that I never get to attend - happended this past weekend as the Section 5 cheerleading competition took place.

I heard Batavia took first in Class B, which is awesome. This Democrat and Chronicle story says they did in the photo, but that Geneva did in the story.

Hopefully the BHS girls took home the title and we will get to see them on the sidelines for a while longer during football season.



The D&C updated the story with results and Batavia did win. Holley's Heather Kelly also won Coach of the Year for Class C.

Congrats to all the girls on the BHS squad!

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