By Jim Ferchland
The Eagles soar to another second-place finish.
After earning a runner-up nod at nationals two weeks ago, the Hauppauge cheerleading team placed second in the county in Small School Session 1 with a 90.3 score, just two points behind top-finisher Longwood.
“It feels good considering that there were so many teams that didn’t make it here,” head coach Laura Alonzo said. “It’s a little disappointing for us, however, because we knew going into it all we had to was hit. We didn’t do that, but the rest of the routine was great.”
Hauppauge was deducted 2.5 points for a minor fall during its routine, so without that fall, the Eagles would have taken first place by half a point.
Taking third was Walt Whitman (86.1), fourth West Islip (84.4) and fifth William Floyd (83.6).
Hauppauge senior three-year starter Sam Suazo said coming in second was not what the team wanted, but was happy with how her final season with the Eagles went.
“I’m proud of the season and how far we’ve come throughout the year with everything that we’ve accomplished,” Suazo said. “Even though we had a fall, we still had a great performance today. This has been my favorite team, and I had such a nice time this year.”
Senior Francesca Capilets has been with the team since her freshman year. During the routine, she said the team had to work hard to make up for the fall.
“We needed to bring more excitement to the routine,” Capilets said. “It’s harder when you have a fall because the crowd is not as interested. We just had to catch everyone’s eye.”
After the national performance , Capilets said there was a lot of pressure going into the final competition at West Islip.
“We came into county’s thinking we need to have our best performance,” she said. “Nationals went so well. We hit it at nationals, and knew we had to do better here.”