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'A grace beyond their years'


Wells cheer team takes top honors



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The Wells cheerleading team were presented to Tuesday’s School Committee meeting after winning the Feb. 13 Shepherd Hill Winter Invitational. Gus Steeves. (click for larger version)
March 10, 2010
SOUTHBRIDGE — For years, the Wells cheerleading team has done its thing in relative obscurity. But last month, the 17 girls broke their silence by taking top prize in the Shepherd Hill Winter Invitational.

"It's not the first time, but it's been a long time," said coach Donna Power, noting the middle school part of the event is considered "novice."

Despite that technicality, some of the participants have been cheerleaders for more years than some professionals have been in their jobs. Take one of the three captains, eighth grader Hannah Lazo — she said she's been cheering in some form since age five, inspired by her mother who was a coach "for 16 some-odd years before I was born."

"I get to be loud, I get to show spirit and dance," she said of why she does it.

Norma Collazo, also a captain, started when she came to Wells in sixth grade. She said she used to watch cheerleaders "and said I want to do that." Although she admitted she's not much into dancing, it does feed into other forms of expression.

"I live, breathe and eat cheerleading," she said.

See Friday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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