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Hello! My name is Coach Kena and I am the President and Head Coach of the Thurston Junior Cheer program! I am married with two little boys, so I love getting to work with of my girls(and boys) at cheer!

                  I am a Thurston High Graduate and former Thurston Varsity Cheerleader. During my four years on the cheerleading team at Thurston we won three consecutive state titles and one junior varsity state title. My senior year my group stunt team placed 3rd at the All State Competition and I was voted “Most Improved”, and “Best Teammate”. My senior year our team finished 2nd in the Nation at the National Competition in Anaheim California, this is the best National finish in program history at Thurston High School. 

                  After high school I continued my cheerleading career. I was on the competition team at Portland State University for one year when I decided to return to Springfield to begin coaching. I was an assistant coach for the middle school team in 2017, and became the head coach for the youth and mini’s teams in 2018. Last season my mini’s team won 2nd at the OCCA State Championship.

                  I love everything about cheerleading! One of the reasons I find this sport to be so rewarding is because I feel it is greatly underestimated. No one understands the strength, dedication, and hard work it takes to perform a cheerleading routine. Cheerleading is one of the greatest team sports because our athletes rely so much on each other. From dancing and cheering to stunting and tumbling, cheerleading is so versatile. I love coaching this age group because I usually get kids who have never done cheerleading before, so I am their first taste of the sport! I get the opportunity to influence their decision whether they do cheer for one year, or all the way through college. I want to create a fun, safe, and healthy foundation for the kids and hopefully instill the love and passion for the sport in them, as my coaches did in me.

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