Local ladies vie for spot on Argos cheer team

MAKING THE CUT: Alexandra M. and Lauren L. take a break from dancing at the Toronto Argonauts cheerleading finals. Lauren made the team, however Alexandra’s number was not called.

York Mills resident Lauren returns to dance squad

It’s like winning back-to-back Grey Cups for Toronto Argonauts cheerleading hopeful Lauren L.

The Bayview and York Mills area resident was vying for one of 33 spots on the 2010 cheerleading squad.

Taking the stage at Cardinal Carter Academy of the Arts on March 20, the 21-year-old performed for judges Rudy Blair of 680 News, photographer Craig Boyko and cheerleading head coach Jorie Brown.

A returning member from the 2009 squad, Lauren was eager to rejoin the friends she made over the last gridiron season.

“All the girls are very friendly and really sweet,” she said. “It’s just nice atmosphere. I feel very comfortable.”

Staying steely in the face of competition, thanks to her training from TnT Dance Force and O.I.P. Dance Centre, she was far from jittery.

“For me I love the team and it’s just something I thoroughly enjoy,” she said. “To prepare, my friend and I got together and went over the routine several times today and came here and hoped for the best.”

Her fellow performer, midtown resident Alexandra M., was all about staying Zen during her final audition.

“For me it was more about calming myself down,” she said. “It wasn’t necessarily about remembering the routine it was more about centering myself.”

Even though there would be some ladies not making the team, Alexandra was appreciative of the chance to make some new friends.

“For me being a new auditioner I find it incredibly friendly. All the girls are very approachable,” she said. “I know it is a competition, but the vibe is not competitive.”

New Argos head coach Jim Barker offered that same team spirit as he spoke with the ladies before the roster was named.

He commended them for their on-field athletics.

“If they’re prepared they can go out and they’ll stay focused just like our players,” he told the audience, his focus on the hopefuls.

“We have some phenomenal athletes do their thing on the field and then in between we have these phenomenal athletes.”

During the concluding Blue Rose Ceremony, Lauren’s number was called — the George Brown business student’s hard work paying off after two weeks.

“I am definitely looking forward to the games, the promotions that we do as well, and the charity work,” she said. “It feels good to give back to the community and through the Argos it’s a great way to be a part of that.”

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