Everyone loves game day traditions

The exciting culture surrounding the football team


by Kaitlyn Brunner

Photo courtesy of yearbook

by Amelia Severn, staff

As the students pack the student section and the football team storms out onto the field, the cheers, music, and roar from the crowd can be heard throughout the stadium. 

The cheerleaders lead the student section through 60 minutes, four quarters, and two halves of football. Even as the temperature begins to drop because of the cold fall air, the band continues its occasional “first downs,” the cheerleaders continue to throw each other up in the air, and the student section continue​​s to cheer.

You can hear the band in the upper right section of the stands trying to pump up the crowd with their “shorts” and fight song. Evie Hoff, junior, who has been a part of the band since freshman year says some of her favorite experiences are at football games. “There is just so much fun. We just have such a high level of energy,” Hoff said. She adds that her favorite part of football games are “just hanging out as a group because we have so much fun together and we’re such a community.”

Hoff loves to play common songs that everyone knows to get the crowd involved. She says “we love to do ‘Hey Baby’ because that’s one that we know the student section buys into and are able to take part in.” The band began playing “Hey Baby” at the end of every game all together as their own tradition. She also enjoys first downs throughout the game. “We love our first down thing. It’s fun to play and makes us feel good,” she said.

The fight song after the players push their way into the endzone is another great tradition. “It brings new energy to the game, and the combination of the game along with the fight song renews the energy,” Hoff said. 

Although the “shorts” the band plays throughout the game really depend on time, her favorite “short” is Seven Nation Army.  

Band, along with cheer, greatly affect the energy during the game and throughout the stands. Cheer has been a great way to celebrate the ups and downs of Shorewood football, with band, it combines to create a terrific atmosphere. Cary Tanaka, junior, has been a part of cheer since her sophomore year. She really enjoys the football games also, feeding off the energy of the crowd. “I love stunting, especially in front of the student section,” Tanaka said. “When I see my friends and others in the crowd it makes me hyped up.” One tradition she especially enjoys is when the student sings along and interacts with the cheers and cheerleaders, like “We’ve Got Spirit.” 

Tanaka also enjoys traveling to away games with the football team. “During one game on the way back we were just singing all together, songs that everybody knew, the football players and the cheerleaders,” she said. “It was like ‘High School Musical’.”

Like band, cheer feeds off the energy of the crowd especially when they are cheering, Tanaka says. She also loves pulling people out of the crowd to cheer with them for Fan of the Game and the team dinners before football games. Tanaka believes one of the best traditions at football games is also singing the Shorewood Fight Song right after the players push their way into the endzone for a touchdown. 

Hannah Alexander, a cheerleader and huge football fan, grew up going to SW football games. “Football in general is part of my life,” Alexander said. She has been a part of cheer since sophomore year and describes football games as “very exciting and fun.” Her favorite cheer at football games is “Rowdy” because “the crowd is very engaged.” Similar to Tanaka and Hoff, Alexander feeds off the energy of the student section.

Alexander likes traveling to away football games. “They’re a fun experience to connect with the cheer team,” she said. She also loves pushing herself in practice to perform better. Her favorite parts include stunting and working on performances. She loves making the run-through poster that the football team breaks coming out of the locker room. 

“One of my highlights of the games is hearing [band] play, especially the drumline,” Alexander said. Tanaka describes another tradition where “drumline comes right in front of the student section and then all the cheerleaders and drill, hop around.” This gets the crowd really hyped for the second half. 

Both band and cheer love performing at halftimes. “As a group, we love to do what we love to do. And we love it when the student section gets involved and buys into what we are doing,” Hoff said. 

One of Tanaka’s greatest experiences is performing at halftime in front of the student section and all the fans. Alexander loves it too. “It creates an adrenaline rush and I get super excited because you get to watch how people react to you and you get to show off and perform. It creates an exciting energy,” Alexander said, 

The performing teams like cheer and band really feed off the energy of the student section. “We can only supply so much of our own energy, [it makes] the energy even higher,” Hoff said. One of the hypest games of the year was on Homecoming night when the student section was packed with purple (mostly in the front), black, white, and blue clothes and everyone was ecstatic. 

Both Tanaka and Alexander agree that the Rotary Cup is their favorite football game over the years.  “It’s always fun to see Shorecrest and Shorewood band and students, cheerleaders, and it’s a fun rivalry,” Alexander said.