Hailey Mortenson is a three-year member of the cheer team at USU Eastern, the longest-standing member of the cheer team. She wants to come back next year since she has one more year of competition eligibility.
Mortenson has been dancing since she was nine. Throughout junior high and high school, she was on her school’s Dance Company at Copper Hills High School in West Jordan. Mortenson is 21, and this is her fourth year here at Eastern, where she is majoring in social work. While some people might get overwhelmed with balancing school and a sport, Mortenson says that cheer has actually helped her in schoolwork and keeps her motivated.
Mortenson also likes the social aspect of cheer, being in an environment with teammates she spends around twelve hours a week with–sometimes more, if games are taken into account. Mortenson loves cheer since she gets to work with a team towards a goal.
“Patience and communication are key to a successful team.”
Last year, the National competition was stolen away from the cheer team. This year the goal is to win at the competition taking place in Daytona Beach, Florida. Mortenson believes that if everyone works hard and stays determined, they can win.
Beyond that, Mortenson isn’t sure if she wants to further her cheer career.
The team is also bigger than it was last year. They had only seven members last year, but their team has more than doubled its size to have seventeen members.
Mortenson’s main role on the team is stunting the main base. This means she takes on most of the weight and is in control of where the flyer’s foot goes. She is a very strong base, and is able to carry two people on her shoulders for a substantial amount of time. It’s always thrilling to see her on the game floor doing her thing.