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Spartan chosen to join 2013 Sea Gals cheerleading team
On the morning of Sunday, April 28, many Sumner High School seniors were soundly sleeping — recovering from late night prom festivities. Christian Fernandez, however, cut the evening short so she could wake up early and practice for the 2013 Sea Gal finals audition.
According to Fernandez, about 20 returning women and 40 fresh faces were given the finals routine on Friday. At the end of the weekend, they competed for their spot on the Sea Gals. As an 18 year old — only weeks away from her high school graduation — Fernandez was the youngest one chosen.
Her number was the fifth to be called and for a moment, she said reality didn’t quite register. She looked down at her tag in disbelief as she realized they were calling her forward to join the team. Tears began to swell as she was handed her poms but composure needed to remain a bit longer. The new squad then performed the routine again but this time around the sense of competition was lifted; they were all on the same team.
Fernandez cheered for the high school her sophomore and junior year but took some time off to focus on dance, which she said was a well-made decision. There was a lot of competition but it was clear which girls didn’t have as much dance technique in their background, she said.
“There was so much talent that it was definitely scary and intimidating,” said Fernandez.
The prospect of the competing talent wasn’t enough to shake her. She has been dancing since the age of three and though she’s versed in many styles, her favorites are tap, contemporary and hip hop.
Besides dancing, she loves wakeboarding, skiing and spending time with her family and dogs in Bonney Lake.
Fernandez said the Seahawks are more than just a sports team; they are part of her family, who are long-time season ticket holders. Her sister was proposed to at a Hawk’s game and even the coming generation is part of the family’s devotion. Fernandez has a nephew with the middle name Hawk.
Fernandez knows she has her own hard work and dedication to thank for becoming an NFL cheerleader but she also recognizes that the road was paved with help from others. She was able to connect with a former Sea Gal who gave her audition tips and advice. She also took advantage of all four pre-audition workshops, which are designed to help the girls prepare for what lays ahead.
In the fall, Fernandez will be found at Hawk’s games and at the University of Washington Tacoma campus, where she will begin her freshman year of college. Her plans for the future could follow a couple road. She hopes to someday own a dance studio, but she is also interested in broadcast journalism.
Like countless other high school seniors, Fernandez doesn’t know what the future will hold but she said it will be fun to watch it unravel. What she can count on is a lot of practices and an unforgettable year.