EVART - Evart's girls cheerleading team has some key meets coming up and key members of the team are looking to steadily improve.

The Wildcats competed at Marion on Wednesday. Evart has a home cheer invitational on Jan. 22, at McBain on Jan. 29 and has another home cheer invitational on Feb. 1.

Coach Marty Pattee's girls were working during the holiday break to get ready for the second half of the season.

Among the leaders has been sophomore Abbigail Boyd, who made her varsity debut as a freshman.

"It went very well, we went to the regionals," she said. "They worked hard."

Boyd likes the way things are going so far this year for the Wildcats. She is a tumbler and a base.

To be effective at a base, the key is "using your legs and working together," Boyd said. "Right now, in Round 1, we've scored the highest."

Motions and dedication are critical for an effective round 1, she added. The team is currently working on Round 3, which involves mounts

Boyd has been in competitve cheer four seasons, including junior high. But going to the varsity level, "we get to do higher level skills."

Boyd also runs track and formerly did the shot put and sprints. She also does the 100, long jump and discus.

Boyd said competitive cheer is more challenging because of the team demands. But track "always" keeps her in shape for cheer, Boyd added.

Evart had open gyms during the summer to allow the cheerleaders to work on their skills.

"Our goals for the season are to improve each round at every competition," Pattee said. "We are focusing on improving and increasing our skills. I expect that they will be contenders at most competitions. Our team strengths will be our clean motions, vocals and well executed skills.

"We will continue to work on our jumps, tumbling and stunting. Our conference has some great teams…it is hard to say who will end up on top. We are basically a young, developing team this year. I expect to see a lot of growth this season. I am already very impressed with their hard work and positive attitudes."

At Marion on Wednesday, "we took first out of 6 teams in division 4 and we were the highest scoring varsity team there which would include Divisions 3 and 4," Pattee. "We scored a little lower in round one than normal but came back with a strong round 3 to take the win. Overall I was very pleased with the team although we still have a lot of work to do."

Teams that competed were: Evart, Marion, Brethren, McBain, Lake City, Pine River (Division 4) and Shepherd and Chippewa Hills (Division 3).