The Pink Ladies Get Gold

Varsity Cheer Team wins Big North championship


Vivian Stamos

The Pink Ladies react to wining the Big North championship.

A perfect undefeated regular season. League champions. Top four in the state. 

The NVOT winter cheer team closed out their 2021-22 winter season and brought home some hardware as proof of their successful endeavors. As Captain Emily Galiano put it: “our goal all year was to bring home another Big North championship,” and that’s exactly what they did. 

At the Big North, the girls were expected to compete against five other schools, but due to COVID-19, Bergenfield was their only competitor. The girls performed their routine, scoring the highest all around, helping them to clinch a Big North League Title and continue their perfect undefeated season. Galiano said, “the hard work, dedication, determination, and bond that these girls all have is what sets us apart from most teams.”

The team, who call themselves the Pink Ladies, went on to compete at the state level in the Varsity All-Music Medium category, contending with cheer teams across New Jersey. Senior Justine Nokaj was grateful for the opportunity following long seasons plagued with COVID problems: “It felt great to be able to compete and win Big North because last year we were not given the chance due to COVID.”

The cheer team poses with their plaque and medals after winning the Big North championship (Vivian Stamos)

Although the Pink Ladies did not halt competitions entirely last year, their routine consisted of recording performances and sending them virtually to judges. This furthered the emotion attached to their State Championship performance, which Nokaj said, “was so much fun and just such a cool experience. We performed one of our best routines.” The girls competed in a dome, which Nokaj pointed out was crucial to the environment and overall experience: “it was filled with parents and teams all around,” she said. “It was just so fun and everyone would cheer for you,” she added.

As the seniors reflect back on their last season and all the girls accomplished, Galiano said how “the Big North win was all that I could want for my team as a senior and as a captain.” She added, “ every practice, bus ride, and competition allowed us to grow into this little family.” 

The “little family” that NVOT Cheer has become has impressed at all three levels: league, conference, and states. As the team prepares for next year, Galiano spoke on the future of the program: “[the underclassmen] have surely made a name for themselves already.”