Cheer Section: Behind the scenes with Brooklyn Kilgus
From the sidelines of the football field to the basketball court, the cheerleading squad plays an important role when it comes to leading the crowd in cheering on their favorite teams.
However, accomplishments by cheerleading teams are often overshadowed by achievements in sports such as football and basketball. Some cheerleading teams travel to participate in regional and national competitions of their own.
Cheerleading is definitely a sport, despite many who speculate that it is not. One thing we can all agree on: it is definitely not easy. That is, in the eyes of Bowling Green cheerleader Brooklyn Kilgus.
Kilgus has been a main base since she was 13 years old. Her responsibility is to control whatever stunt that the team is planning to do, and any slight failure could have major consequences.
“When something goes wrong, you feel like you’re the one who the blame falls on,” she said. “You feel a lot of guilt. When you don’t do your job correctly, the whole team can fall apart.
Kilgus began cheering when she was six years old as a competitive All-Star cheerleader before joining the Bowling Green High School squad.
Since then, Brooklyn has been on the sidelines for many of the Purples’ most memorable achievements, including two football state championships and a basketball state championship.
“I really enjoyed getting to cheer on the football and boys’ basketball teams at the state championship,” she said. “It’s been amazing to be able to go to Rupp Arena for the past three years and cheer on their floor and to cheer on WKU’s football field.”
However, sometimes Brooklyn is not only on the sidelines for big achievements, she is in the spotlight.
Earlier this year, she was part of a 4-Girl Partner Stunt Group that won a NHSCC National Championship, an achievement that she can now forever show off on her right ring finger.
“It has been absolutely great to be able to work with this team the past few years to be able to win something like that,” said Kilgus. “They have been like my sisters on and off the floor.”
Brooklyn’s passion for the sport of cheerleading also shows why it is not necessarily cut out for everyone.
“You have to love what you do to be a cheerleader because it takes a lot of time and effort,” she said. “If it is just something that you’re doing to occupy your time, then you shouldn’t be doing it at all.”
In due time, Brooklyn will graduate from Bowling Green High in May and will attend Western Kentucky University in the fall, where she will pursue a double major in business and fashion merchandising.