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Maria Regina Takes Cheers to County Center

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – The Maria Regina cheer team includes girls from all over the New York Metropolitan area – representing towns and villages in Westchester as well as the Bronx and Yonkers. The diverse group of athletes from the Hartsdale parochial school showcased their skills at the 63rd Westchester Cheerleading Invitational Tuesday.

“Cheer takes a lot of dedication and work,” said team tri-captain Destiny Vega. “We don’t get the same attention as some sports, but we do as much or more practicing and hard work as other sports. We love the competitions like this one because we can show what we can do.”

Michelle DeJesus said the Westchester County event, which is the longest running cheer competitions of its kind in the area, presents a unique challenge.

“The competition is fun and exciting and nerve-racking at the same time,” said Michelle Dejesus, who is one of Maria Regina’s three captains. “We know many of these teams, so we can compete with the best teams in the area.”

Maria Regina competed in the Class B division which was won by The Ursuline Academy of New Rochelle Tuesday. Monday’s winners were St. Catharine Academy of the Bronx in Class B, Croton in Class C and New Rochelle in Class A. St. Catharine’s returned Tuesday to win the Grand Champion award against all the top winners.

Gabriella Veltri, the third team captain, said the tough competition helps in building perfect routines for the coming season that peaks in January and February.

“We have about 15 competitions this year,” Gabriella Veltri said. “It’s just getting our stunts perfect that takes so many hours of practice. We always want to get it all perfect if we can.”

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