Stuntin’ on ’em

Ferris cheer team provides home away from home

Members of the Ferris State cheer team pump up the crowd on the sidelines at a home football game. Photo by: Keith Salowich | Web Supervisor

The Ferris cheer team has not only provided fans and players energy, it has also provided a family for many of its members. 

The Ferris cheer team has become a staple at football and basketball games throughout the athletic year and members of the team are certainly enjoying the tight-knit community that the growing team has built. 

“We’re a very loving bunch of guys and girls. We’ve all really come together and we can talk to each other about anything. We’re not just a team, we’re more than that,” freshman Lauren Zielinski said. 

It appears as if that tight–knit atmosphere is helping the cheer team grow into a special group. The team is boasting tremendous numbers and is currently sporting 30 plus names to a growing list of members who are striving to provide fans with a fun atmosphere at sporting events. 

That number makes the team larger than any in recent memory and it appears as if the size of the team isn’t going to stop growing at any point soon. 

“I believe that this is the biggest Ferris cheer has been, for as long as I know of,” Coach Caitlyn Peca said. “It is growing very fast, as I have already had three high school cheerleaders reach out to me to do a visit and an interview for tryouts in the spring.” 

There isn’t too much talk of college cheer but Peca’s growing team has provided the opportunity for members like Zielinski to continue growing in their cheer while performing at a high level. 

“When I got to college I was not expecting to be a part of a team or any athletics here but my high school coach knows one of our coaches and they were looking for some more girls and one of my head coaches said I would be a great candidate,” Zielinski said. 

Peca has certainly played a huge role in giving members of the team that warm and welcoming environment to be a part of. Many times, fans are blown away by what the team can accomplish on the sidelines and it doesn’t happen without a lot of hard work and effort from everyone involved. 

The team practices three days a week for two hours at a time while also attending mandatory lift sessions one day a week and many more in their free time. Peca also provides private lessons while opening her door to any member in need of growing in their abilities. The work has paid off as Ferris is introducing a women’s stunt team to bring their talent to a competitive level. 

“I am so excited for this journey. Being able to put our name out there is huge, we have been determined and practiced hard to be able to perform our best come game time,” Peca said. 

The stunt team opens their season on Jan. 28 at Davenport and will look to continue to build off the success and promise that current members of the cheer team have shown. 

As the stunt team looks to develop into a competitive team, there is no mistaking the fact that the group looks to grow closer as it becomes bigger. 

“My goals for this upcoming team is to become a stronger family, to get our name out there and to provide a safe and fun environment for anybody who has ever had a dream to become a college cheerleader,” Peca said.