By Payton Moody
Meet Erin Spillman, a dedicated cheerleader for Hugo High School, whose passion for her sport and future aspirations shine brightly.
When asked about her favorite coach, Spillman mentioned Kelsie Lopez. “Kelsie Lopez has been the best coach I’ve had,” Spillman said. “She’s always pushed me to be the best I can be and has been like a second mom to me. I wouldn’t be who I am without her.”
In any sport, teammates play a crucial role, and Spillman is fortunate to have a supportive group. “All of my teammates always help each other out, but the one who supports me and helps me the most is my best friend Jenna,” Spillman said. “She always picks me up when I’m feeling down.”
Turning to her school days, Spillman fondly remembered her second-grade teacher, Lori Harrison. “I would say my favorite teacher would have to be Lori Harrison,” she said. “She was my second-grade teacher. She had such a caring heart and loved her kids like her own.”
Preparation is key in cheerleading, and Spillman put in the work during the off-season. “I had practice every other day early in the morning during the summer and went to tumbling every Friday night,” she said.
Cheerleading has taught Spillman valuable lessons. “Cheer has taught me that nothing comes easy,” she said. “If you want something, you have to get up and go get it.”
Looking ahead to the current season, Spillman has set her sights on returning to the state competition. “I hope to accomplish making it to state again this year. My team and I have had challenging things thrown at us, but we’ve handled them well, and going to state would feel good.”
The matchup Spillman is most excited about this season is the game against Antlers, their biggest rivals.
Beyond high school, Spillman has clear plans for her future. “My plans after high school are to pursue my nursing career,” she said. “I’m already a CNA, and I’m working to get my CMA. I hope to become a labor and delivery nurse after I graduate college.” Her determination and passion extend beyond cheerleading, promising a bright future in the field of nursing.