|The following story was written and reported by Brandon Ecoffey, Native Sun News Managing Editor. All content © Native Sun News.
Ella Pedredon is now a member of the Chadron State Eagles cheerleading team.
Chadron State nabs Pine Ridge cheerleader
By Brandon Ecoffey
Native Sun News Managing Editor
CHADRON, NEB — Ella Pedregon, a former cheerleader for the Pine Ridge Thorpes, has made it big. Recently Ella made the cut and is now a member of the Chadron State Eagles cheer team.
The NCAA Division II Eagles have built a reputation as a one of the premier college football programs in the entire country and Ella will find herself on the sidelines cheering for the team this fall.
According to Coach Ann Hanson, Head cheerleading coach for the Eagles, members of the team are chosen based on their performance in interviews, their ability to learn cheers, attitude, and what they have accomplished at the previous schools they have attended.
“She displayed all these qualities...I think she would make a good role model,” said Hanson.
The daughter of Ted and Mona Pedregon, Ella, began cheering for the Pine Ridge Thorpes in the fifth grade. However according to Ella she began learning the trade at an even younger age when she would follow her sister Felicia to cheer events.
“I think I was probably 6 when I would go with my sister to her practices and games when she was cheering in high school,” said Ella.
In order to be part of the cheerleading squad, members are required to maintain a 2.0 grade point average and carry a course load of at least 24 credit hours according to the Chadron State website.
Although Ella will be cheering in front of one of the larger crowds in division II football, the notion of leading the dedicated fans at Elliot Field in the Don Beebe Stadium does not intimidate her.
“I know that I will have more eyes on me and that I am on a bigger squad but I am looking forward to it. There are recruiters from NFL teams that come to our games but I think it will be good,” she said.
According to Coach Hanson the team will consist of 23 members and Ella was one of 6 chosen from the 19 that tried out for the team this year. “Ella brings a lot of responsibility,” said Hanson.
Ella had not planned on cheering at the college level but was enticed to tryout by Coach Hanson.
“I didn’t want to cheer anymore until I came on my campus tour and the coach asked me to tryout. If there are other girls out there that want to cheer I would tell them to go for it and that they can make it like I did. I didn’t think I could until I tried out and made the team,” said Ella.
The Eagles will play an eleven game season and will be eligible for postseason play if they qualify. Currently the Eagles are expected to finish second in their conference but the home field advantage that will be directed by Ella and the other members of her squad could tilt the tide in Chadron State’s favor.
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