There is a team that is often overlooked. This team not only plays a vital role on the sidelines of the field and the court but also allows both men and women to find themselves as individuals.
Alexis Marshall, marketing sophomore, is from Cibolo, Texas, and is a member of the Texas State cheerleading team. Marshall said being a cheerleader has improved her character and prepared her for life after college.
“Lessons I (take) away from being a part of this team are learning perseverance, taking instruction, trusting others and holding myself accountable,” Marshall said. “As a cheerleader, I’ve learned that I need to work hard to improve and reach my potential as an athlete. I learned that it takes a lot of sacrifices to contribute to a team and find the success that we all want.”
Marshall has met some of her best friends through cheerleading. Marshall compares the team to a family and knows the girls will always be by her side.
“Cheering has taught me the value of being a team player and most of all, I feel like I’m part of a large family that I can always count on,” Marshall said. “Being a part of this team allowed me to meet so many great people. I’ve never been around such a funny group. There has not been an event where we haven’t ended up crying-laughing.”
Sarah Southerly, teammate and business marketing sophomore, describes Marshall as selfless.
“Alexis has impacted my life in such a positive and uplifting way,” Southerly said. “She’s there literally whenever I need her, and she always knows how to cheer me up if I’m having a bad day. She’ll go out of her way to help me and others around her out of the kindness of her heart and that has really inspired me to be a better person.”
Head cheerleading coach Jocelyn Stephens said Marshall’s uplifting attitude radiates. Stephens gave each cheerleader a power word, and Marshall’s word is “positivity.”
“Alexis consistently brings good energy and positivity to the practice room and games,” Stephens said. “She is an awesome team player, role model and great representation of our program and university.”
Looking back to some of her most memorable experiences as a cheerleader, Marshall recalls a moment from a game against the University of Houston last season.
“My first game cheering as a collegiate cheerleader was the game against University of Houston last year,” Marshall said. “Running out of the tunnel felt blissful. All of my hard work had led up to that moment. It was my first time being in front of such a huge crowd, the liveliness and school spirit of the full stadium was incredible.”
Outside of cheer, Marshall has two very strong influences in her life: her parents.
“My parents have been an amazing support system for me,” Marshall said. “They are always there for me and want to see me succeed. I appreciate them so much, I don’t think I would be the woman I am today if it weren’t for them.”
After graduating, Marshall hopes to instill the lessons she has learned so far and prosper on a team working towards a common goal.
“When I graduate from college and pursue my career, I will most likely find myself participating in a group environment where teamwork is vital to success,” Marshall said. “Being a part of this team has taught me skills to prepare myself for the future and has given me the tools to be an effective leader.”