The school newspaper of Oakville High School


The school newspaper of Oakville High School


The school newspaper of Oakville High School


Incoming Coaches

Golden Girls, cheer teams work with new coaching

Coming into the winter sports season, two of Oakville’s spirit teams had to find new coaches after situations arose with each. The Golden Girls have found and been working with their new coach for the winter.

“Parents were super communicative and got the word out at their studios and amongst people they knew,” activities director Rebecca Czuppon said. “We settled on a girl named Kristen Cunningham.”

As OHS’s activities director, Czuppon was tasked with finding the right fit for the Golden Girls.

“She’s super positive, understands the dance world [and] understands the competition world,” Czuppon said. “She works outside of here at a studio with someone who is also a high school dance coach, so a ton of mentoring is happening…”

Cunningham currently attends college, which means she is able to fit into the Golden Girls’ schedule.

“She has that flexible schedule that matches up with our crazy school time schedule,” Czuppon said. “We’ve done our darndest to keep those schedules the same…I know as well as anybody that kids are asked to make work schedules three months out so they can work…so we try really hard to keep [schedules] the same as what has been presented to them.”

Because the Golden Girls have a more “aggressive” winter season, they were in need of a coach after the previous coach, Codie Wicks, had to step down after a new addition to her family.

“Bringing a baby home changes things, and my perspective on coaching changed,” Wicks said. “Now instead of just being a teacher with a husband, I also am a teacher with a husband and a son…Family time and time at home became more of a priority.”

Wicks and her husband are currently fostering a baby boy, who they plan to adopt. With the many responsibilities a coach has, she was not able to spend the needed time with her family. 

“It was a really really hard decision to make because I love those girls — I still do,” Wicks said.  “I think they’re great. I think the team has amazing potential, but I just had to put my family first.”

Luckily, Cunningham has been able to step in to support the Golden Girls for this important part of their season.

“I think dance is already off to a solid start and super impressed with the amount of time and effort that that coach has applied already,” Czuppon said. “And I’m pleasantly surprised with how the kids have accepted that, and I think their attitude is a big part of it.”

The Golden Girls and cheer teams perform at different events. “We have a really great team with great captains,” cheerleader Grace Hickman (12) said, “…so I know it’ll be organized. They’ve (the JV coaches) really helped us the entire season.” Both teams needed to find new coaches at the end of their fall seasons. Photos by Alyssa Johnston

Like the Golden Girls, the cheer team also sought help when coach Benjamin Stallons had to resign in November after he had faced health problems. 

“It makes sense, we understand,” Grace Hickman (12) said. “We wouldn’t want him to risk his health for cheer, because it’s not more important than being healthy.”

Two members already active with the cheer team have been able to help with cheer practices.

“The coach who does JV, Savannah Forrester, who is also an alumni from here, is gonna do double duty and really gonna work with both teams,” Czuppon said. 

Forrester, like Cunningham, is also a college student, which means she also has the flexibility needed for school. The cheerleaders will also be helped by someone who may be familiar — math teacher Kara Guentz. Guentz’s daughter, Mallory, was a senior cheer captain last year. 

Though cheer is getting help from Guentz and Forrester, the current cheer captains will also be bringing their team through the season.

“I talked to the captains last week and said, ‘It really depends on the culture and attitude that you guys bring to practice and games,’” Czuppon said. “‘If you’re positive and you’re efficient with your time, and you show up and do the skills that need to be worked on, you’re gonna be just fine.’”

Despite all the changes, Hickman has a positive outlook for cheer’s winter season.

“We have a really great team with great captains,” Hickman said, “so I know it’ll be organized. They’ve really helped us the entire season.”

Though the Golden Girls and cheerleaders have hit a few roadblocks, Czuppon thinks that the students have resilience, and have the ability to make the most of their seasons.

“I’m feeling pretty positive, in both cases to be honest,” Czuppon said. “…I think if you say we’re gonna make lemonade, then we’re gonna make lemonade.”

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About the Contributor
Sawyer Bess, Reporter
Hello, I'm Sawyer Bess, and it's my first year on the newspaper staff. This is also my third year in the broadcast program. I am a senior at OHS, and other programs I am involved in include Youth and Government, golf and I'm our school's mascot. After I graduate high school, I plan to enjoy my summer and then attend college, majoring in journalism at Mizzou.

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