Cheering for a change

JV cheer adds a new kind of member to the squad


Adam Wendler will be EHS’s first male cheerleader.

Adam Wendler (10) will be pioneering new territory next school year as the first male EHS cheerleader in school history.

“I hope that people will accept me,” Wendler said. “I hope they see that I was brave enough to try out, to get out there and try something new instead of following the crowd.”

Wendler didn’t know many of the girls on the team; yet, he still pushed to tryout because he has been doing tumbling/gymnastics for 11 years.

“I plan on trying cheer in college because it’s fun,” Wendler said. “I like doing my gymnastics.”

Cheer is going to be a way for him to put his skills to use.

“I’m really excited about Adam being on the team. He’s a great tumbler,” Katie Meyerkord, JV squad member, said. “He’s going to fit in with the rest of us well. He’s really nice.”

Beyond his tumblings skills Wendler’s other physical abilities were key when Ms. Lindsey Mueller, former head varsity coach, and the other cheer coaches Mrs. Kelly Kennedy Ms. Samantha Shackelford, Ms.Lauren Jones, Ms. Amanda Halbert decided on the teams.

Some of the coaches helped judge at tryouts while there were other coaches from outside schools who helped judge, as well. They gave each individual a score, and then based on the scores, the coaches made their decisions.

“His spirit, his big smile, his jumps–he had great height, great form, great flexibility. He was very sharp,” Ms. Mueller said. “He had great voice. Obviously being a guy, you’re going to have that loud, deep, projected voice, which is awesome.”

This wasn’t Wendler’s first time trying out. He also tried out last year.

“Because he didn’t make it, I told him be the mascot so he could learn some of the motions and placements,” Ms. Lindsey Mueller, former head varsity coach, said. “He made tremendous improvement this last year. Everything that I talked to him about the previous year he worked on, so he was able to make our JV squad.”

By joining a formerly all-girls team, Wendler is putting himself out there in uncharted territory where no other guys have before in hopes people will accept him.

“I think he deserved it since he worked hard to get there,”  Nathan Bauman (10) “I think other people might be weirded out since he’s a boy, but he tried hard to get there so he deserves it.”

As a varisty football player, Andy Coulter (12) is used to the cheerleader always being there.

“It’s good that he worked hard to make it,” Coulter said. “And it’s good he didn’t pay attention to what the people around him may say and just went for what he wants.”

Beyond the stunts Brianna Stefanic, JV squad member, found other reasons that having Wendler on the team will be beneficial to the squad.

“Cheer will be fun with Adam because 1) boy uniform and 2) he’s really good at tumbling, so he’ll make our routines look a lot better,” Stefanic, said. “It will be different but fun.”

With all the support, Wendler is ready to redefine the social norm at EHS.

“Go him,” Ian Rust (10) said. “He’s setting a new standard, showing how comfortable he is with himself and how he’s not afraid to do what he likes to do.”