WEST ORANGe, NJ - Loud and enthusiastic cheering rang through the halls of West Orange High School and throughout the community on September 20 as the Tarnoff Gym hosted the Fall Pep Rally. This year's revamped rally was attended by hundreds of students, athletes, parents, and administrators as they gathered to support fall sports. The high school also unveiled the new school mascot, Montey the Mountaineer. Montey is a frontiersman full of pep and tons of dance moves. When he was introduced his dancing included breakdancing and sliding across the floor.
Principal Hayden Moore was introduced by Athletic Director, Ronald Bligh. Mr. Moore was the first one to run through the new inflatable Mountaineer Tunnel. All senior athletes involved in fall sports ran through the smoke filled tunnel to an energetic and cheering audience. Bligh, dressed like Davey Crockett, took the lead when introducing the new school song, “I said it’s great to be from West Orange.”
Interim Superintendent, James O’Neill, says, “One of the exciting things of being at the pep rally is to see students support athletes of all different sports. It’s a great way to start off the school year.”
The cheerleaders commenced the rally by shouting “We are, West Orange!” Following the cheerleaders, the tennis and cross-country teams were introduced. Seniors for both sports had a personal introduction. The tennis team threw candy into the crowds, while the cross-country team danced to David Guetta’s song, “Play Hard.”
The color guard previewed a portion of their routine from their fall show, Creatures of the Night. The Marching Mountaineers marching band had seniors dance to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” as the rest of the band played a live performance of the song.
Both the boys and girls’ soccer teams pumped up the crowd with entertaining dance routines. The boys team danced to “Teach Me How To Dougie” by Cali Swag Disctrict and the girls danced to “Waka Waka”, the 2010 world cup theme song, by Shakira. The girl’s volleyball team was lead by their three coaches and senior players, as they performed their own version of the “YMCA” and blew bubbles into the audience while throwing out candy.
The cheerleaders took the stage before the football team, setting the tone for tomorrow’s first home game against West Essex at 7:00 pm under the new lights at Suriano Stadium. Senior cheerleaders wore shirts that read, “Class of 2014!” and threw goodie bags into the audience. The senior cheerleaders performed a routine to a medley of songs and got the crowd pumped.
First year football coach at West Orange High School, Coach Jim Matsakis, introduced his new team by telling stories of pep rallies in his hometown in Ohio. He led a traditional locker room chant, “Mountaineers, Yes Sir.” With the help of Montey the Mountaineer, he directed chants between each side of the gymnasium. Then, the football seniors were announced and came running out to “Enter Sandman” by Metallica.
After the all the cheerleaders performed a short routine, Mr. Moore closed the pep rally by thanking the audience for supporting the mountaineers. Not once, but twice did he proudly say, “I’m the luckiest principal in New Jersey.”
This year’s revamped fall pep rally boasted with school spirit and cheers from all. As Bligh said throughout the night, “What a crowd!”
Don't forget that the community is invited to the Mountaineer Fan Fest from 4:00 - 7:00 on the baseball field, where there will be inflatables for teens and children, face painting, fun and much more, followed by the 7:00 pm Kickoff.