Wave goodbye to “Truckin'”

Tigard’s beloved cheer is off the rotation as a result of unsafe behavior at Friday’s game.


Liz Blodgett

During Friday’s game against Lake Oswego, the student section shows some spirit. The cheer, Truckin, was banned mid-game when cheerleaders and administration deemed it too dangerous.

By Jared Debban and Meghan Turley

     This past week #beststudentsectioninthestate ran into some trouble with new Principal Brian Bailey. As the Tigers rolled to a 31-7 win over Lake Oswego, Tigard students rolled over each other in the stands which led to rising concerns from the sidelines of the football field by Principal Bailey. Students falling off of the bleacher’s while participating in cheers throughout the game led to a temporary ban of THS’ beloved “Truckin’” cheer. 

     Students first heard about the ban through a social media post Saturday made by the “tigardhighcheer” Instagram page. The team let students know that unfortunately, the cheer would have to stop being used, “until we can safely demonstrate that cheer at games.” When students in the comments of the post accused the team of not being able to make that decision, they were directed to instead blame Principal Bailey, who made the call to end the cheer. 

     Principal Bailey, reached by email Monday following the football game Friday, said that the cheer was not banned, and instead that he had asked ASB and cheer to stop the cheer during games if they saw students being unsafe. On two different occasions on Friday night, Bailey says he saw complete rows of students pushed over and falling on to the ground in the stands.  

     “Student safety is a high priority of mine, so my expectations are that students move slightly in each direction during the cheer (just like the cheer team does) and that we all remain upright and safe.” Bailey said. 

     Bailey also noted that Truckin’, when done properly, is one of his favorite cheers, a stance shared by many student section participants as well. 

     Junior Nicole Salazar explained how she thinks the cheer ending was a result of people getting hurt and falling. While she doesn’t feel it was fair of admin to make the call, “it is understandable… it’s definitely a crowd favorite so it’s a little sad,” Salazar said.   

     Coach Jordan, who helps coach Tigard’s varsity cheer team, said that it would be difficult to change such a fun and longstanding cheer. “However,” she added, “if [the student section] can’t comply with safety standards we will save it until further notice.”

     Cheer team co-captain senior Alex Phillips explained that it was a group decision to end the cheer at the game. Phillips says while the cheer isn’t going to be ended permanently, it may be a while before it returns. “It wasn’t a decision that was [thought out],” she added. “It happened because we needed to care about the safety of students because a lot of students got pushed over.” 

     ASB Spirit officer Ethan McClelland was in the line of cheerleaders during the second attempt of Truckin’. He tried to make it clear the expectations for the cheer and which way the students were supposed to start but that was not met as they had expected. 

     “The cheer was getting to the point where the students were getting too rowdy with the cheer,” McClelland said. “Students were being trampled and pushed, so we had to make the executive decision to stop the cheer until it can be done safely.” 

     While the Truckin’ cheer might not be gone forever, it may be awhile before Tigers are able to hear it in the stands again.