The Examiner U-46 News Feed
South Elgin students honored by U-46 board
By Seth Hancock
A pair of South Elgin High School students are headed to Florida next week to compete with the US National Junior Coed Cheerleading team in the International Cheer Union World Championships.
Juniors Tristan Cruz and TJ Ramos will make the trip to the competition at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex from Wednesday, April 24 through Friday, April 26. The pair were recognized by the Board of Education in School District U-46 at its April 1 meeting as was DREAM Academy senior Edwin Vargas for receiving an award by the Illinois Coalition for Educating At-Risk Youth (ICEARY).
Cruz said that he and Ramos had trained and competed with the Storm’s cheerleading squad for nine months then tried out for the national team in February and the training has continued since. The duo were among 28 cheerleaders selected in the Midwest.
“Ever since February up until now, we’ve had practices three times a week in preparation for this,” Cruz said.
South Elgin varsity cheer coach Savannah Bennett sang their praises in a district press release.
“Tristan is a phenomenal athlete who has a contagious positive energy,” Bennett said. “Even during a tough practice, he’s on the mat encouraging his teammates and putting in 100 percent effort. He’s definitely a role model to a lot of our younger athletes.”
Bennett added: “TJ is a natural born leader with a skill level that is absolutely insane. He’s constantly striving for excellence and pushes his teammates to be their best. You will never catch him slacking at practice nor will you ever hear him complain.”
In March, Vargas received the Outstanding Student Award for 2019 by ICEARY. He said he would not have been able to accomplish this without his teacher Karen Tobin who nominated him.
“He has overcome struggles in his life and possesses a strong determination to work toward a successful future,” said Krystal Bush, DREAM Academy principal, for the release. “We could not be more proud of him.”