Coach Storey Steps Down to Move Up

2020-2021 Cheerleaders

In 2014, Coach Jessica Storey entered the classroom and the gym at the same time. Seven years later, she has gained experience, wisdom, and irreplaceable bonds with her cheerleaders. Earlier this year, she resigned from coaching; however, she now plans to transition from junior high to Northside High School where she will lead the first-ever cheer squad at the new freshmen center.

The biggest challenge in coaching cheer has been the time commitment.

“A lot of people don’t realize that there is no ‘off season’ for cheer,” Coach Storey said. “We are a year-round sport because we cheer for both football and basketball. After their seasons are over, it’s time for tryouts, and we immediately start prepping for the next season or event.”

One moment that stood out for Coach Storey was the first time she took her returners to cheer competition.

“It was a truly groundbreaking moment because they were the first team to ever compete from Kimmons,” Coach Storey said.

Current cheerleader Raven Gaines, 8th, liked the first day of summer practice when she got to meet her teammates.

“I was really excited to meet them because I was going to create new bonds that would last forever,” Raven said.

For Mariah Harrison, 8th, summer also marked the most memorable because she had to condition and learn so many new things.

“There was a lot to learn in such a short time,” Mariah said.

Addison Foster, 8th, remembered when the squad had to run a mile when it was freezing outside.

“It was fun, and we all finished fast,” Addison said.

The cheerleaders acknowledged that Coach Storey has been there for them throughout the hard times.

“I truly appreciate everything she has done for the team,” Jasmine Volavang, 8th, said. “Every time I was down, I would go to her for help and she would advise me on what to do.”

Mariah appreciated how Coach Storey inspired her not to give up when things got hard, like when teammates got quarantined.

“It really meant a lot and helped me push through the hard moments during the season,” Mariah said.

As for being one of the final freshmen to cheer for Kimmons, Marlene Monterroza, 8th, is glad to have been part of the team.

“Coach Storey’s bond with us was like a bond with one of your close friends,” Marlene said. “We were able to talk with her about anything.”

Jasmine felt happy that she got to experience being the girl’s manager and Coach Storey’s helper.

“I got to go to the games which I had never experienced before,” Jasmine said. “I liked watching the girls entertain the crowds, and talking to the coaches and the principals who were at the games.”

Nubianey Frias, 9th, felt it an honor to say she had Coach Storey as her cheer coach.

“She is one of the best coaches out there,” Nubianey said. “She’s always there when you need her. Anytime she thought I was upset, she would quickly try and talk to me to make sure I was okay.”

Watching the progression and improvement of her teams’ skills over the years is what Coach Storey will miss most about guiding junior high cheerleaders.

“At this level, a majority of students who make the team have never cheered before, so we are really starting from ground zero,” Coach Storey said. “It’s always a great reward at the end of the year when I get to look back and see how much they have grown in their confidence and talents. I hope my legacy will be that my teams were able to represent this side of town in a respectable light and that we showed cheerleading is a true sport.”

Throughout the years, each team has held a special place in Coach Storey’s heart.

“The bonds and experiences you share with a team are truly unforgettable,” Coach Storey said. “To my former cheerleaders — thank you for giving me the absolute best seven years. I love each and every one of you so much!”

As for moving on to Northside High School, Coach Storey most looks forward to being able to build a brand new 9th grade program at the high school level.

“It’s very exciting to see all the changes, and I am ready to hit the ground running with it!” Coach Storey said.