May 6, 2015
A total of 155 people from across the country attended the cheer and pom squad tryouts. The contestants were interviewed and judged on different skills.
“This year’s talent at tryouts was incredible,” said Bruce Bills, head cheer and mascot coach. “The candidates for cheer were evaluated by judges in four skill categories over the two-day selection process: game day/spirit, standing tumbling, running tumbling and stunts, and they also had individual interviews. I looked for not only the most skilled cheerleaders, but also those who would be great representatives for Texas Tech and our program. I am excited to begin a new year.”
2015-2016 Cheer Team
Fifteen contestants were chosen for the all-girl team and 28 were chosen for the co-ed team.
The All-Girl team members are Taylor Altom, Houston; Lexi Atkinson, Denton; Kailea Coles, Rockwall; Paegan Collings, Fort Worth; Keely Ehlers, Lubbock; Gabriela Garza, Lubbock; Karlye Loughman, Bedford; Ashlyn Massey, North Richland Hills; Kayla McFarland, Abilene; Savannah Mize, Friendswood; Kendall Jones, Cleburne; Madison Lewis, Gilbert, Arizona; Deyanna Porter, Lorton, Virginia; Hannah Sheaffer, Dallas; and Kaitlynn Vela, Bedford.
The co-ed team members are Christopher Alleman, Seabrook; William Arrott, San Angelo; Charles Beasley, Stafford, Virginia; Shelbi Crawford, Rockwall; Damon Dunbar, Denver, Colorado; Vincent Farello, Rio Rancho, New Mexico; Heather Gallegos, Royse City; Sarah Howard, Austin; Kennedy Hudson, The Woodlands; Deylon Kirschling, Austin; Paige Kloetzer, Houston; Mikaela Lozada, Wylie; Thomas McCarthy, Derry, New Hampshire; Haley Moore, Lumberton; Brianna Moreno, Del Rio; Justin Ornelas, Del Rio; Nicolo Rossorelli, Keller; Luke Schuster, Palatine, Illinois; Rikki Sennikoff, Forney; Dejuan Smith, High Point, North Carolina; Philip Sorrells, Amarillo; Justin Telford, Arlington; Zach Tucker, Basehor, Kansas; Sammi Vonderschmidt, McKinney; Lindsay White, Rockwall; Flo Willfort, Vienna, Austria; Jamie Williams, Austin; and Christopher Yaneza, Downers Grove, Illinois.
Out of 62 contestants for the pom squad, 20 were chosen for the 2015-2016 year – 12 rookies and eight veterans.
“This was by far the most talent we have ever seen at a Texas Tech Pom audition,” said Erin Harold, head pom squad coach. “We had candidates from eight states, which made it even more competitive. We can’t say enough about the level of talent and the quality of people on the team this year. We are so excited to get to work for the upcoming season.”
2015-2016 Pom Team
The new pom squad members are Rachel Alexander, Plano; Katelyn Begnaud, Friendswood; Alyssa Cisneros, Dallas; Kayla Coston, Keller; Shelby Gorney, Montgomery; Faith Henderson, Lewisville; Nailah Jones, Houston; Brooke Kotrla, Sugar Land; Lauren Lund, Omaha, Nebraska; Marisa Martin, San Antonio; Lindsay Ollivant, Plano; Raegan Riegel, Temple; Natalee Riepenhoff, Flower Mound; Shannon Rockwell, Allen; Tori Skillings, Plano; Ciara Stamper, Highlands Ranch, Colorado; Mary Claire Sweatt, Colleyville; Hailey West, Norman, Oklahoma; Christa Widjaja, The Colony; and Meagan Wilkes, Lubbock.
Texas Tech Cheer and Pom placed second and fourth at this year’s collegiate nationals.
For more information about the squads or the Texas Tech Spirit Program, please visit its website.
The Texas Tech Spirit Program is part of the Center for Campus Life office, a division of Undergraduate Education & Student Affairs.
The Spirit Squads lead the fans in supporting the teams at football, basketball, and volleyball games. They serve as ambassadors not only at athletic events, but also at many different school functions. In addition, the Spirit Squads gladly participate in their community by volunteering at local schools, charity events, and youth organizations.
Being a proud part of the Texas Tech Spirit Program is more than just a year-round commitment. It means dedication from each member to maintain the school spirit of the students, the alumni, and the fans.
The Center for Campus Life offers programs and services that enrich the Red Raider experience by focusing on student transitions, the university and campus traditions, establishing positive relationships with students and families, and maintaining collaborative partnerships.