If you’ve ever spent any time at all in a dugout, chances are you have heard players cheering on their teammates. Even in Little League, team cheers are a great way to keep athletes on their toes; engaged and competitive in a sport known for its occasional patches of inaction.
Geneseo’s softball team has taken organized cheering to the next level. The team has developed a bevy of chants that boost team morale and keep things light throughout the long doubleheaders.
Many of these cheers are variations on those that the athletes have grown up hearing throughout travel ball and every level of play in between. Several of the cheers have their own unique spin in order to incorporate the names of different team members. The team will even make up cheers to the tune of pop songs to motivate one another.
“It keeps us talking, it keeps us motivated and concentrated,” senior infielder Kayleigh Troia said.
Learning the cheers is something of a tradition for the athletes.
“Learning the cheers as a freshman, it’s fun watching the seniors, and as a senior it’s fun teaching [the freshmen],” Troia said.
Though many of the cheers have been around for a while, the team is always coming up with new ones. Certain players even have their own personalized cheers.
The cheers are a way to bring the team together and rally in big moments.
“There are certain cheers that are meant for big hits and RBIs that help psyche up the team and intimidate the other team,” Troia said.
Though the cheers can inspire competition between teams, they are never mean-spirited. They are always encouraging teammates, rather than attacking opponents.
While organized cheering is not unique to Geneseo softball, the team prides itself on being one of the best-sounding squads around. The team cheers loud and cheers often.
“It’s a part of practice that’s different from doing drills,” Troia said. “The cheers make the team cohesive.”
Some may perceive cheering as being best left on the Little League field, but adding some lighthearted fun into the competitive environment of collegiate athletics cannot possibly hurt.
For the fans, watching the team cheer adds a new dimension of entertainment to the games. For the athletes, it is just plain fun.
After many delays, the Geneseo softball team is scheduled to play a doubleheader home on Thursday April 3, Friday April 4 and Saturday April 5.