Matus cheers for the USA

Darina Lubenov, Editor-in-Chief

Being a quick learner, senior Joey Matus landed on Elk Grove’s varsity cheerleading squad and quickly made the move to national appearances as a junior national USA cheerleader. 

The 2022 US Junior Coed National Team, led by head coach Jared Erlenbaugh, scouted Matus during practice. It took two years for Erlenbaugh to invite Matus to try out for the team.

On the EG Cheer team, Matus is a stunter. 

“It all started off of him,” Matus said. “He believed in me and he saw something in me.”

From there, Matus attended an open tryout and successfully landed a spot on the 32-member team. On the USA Junior National Coed team, he is a stunter. The team program resides in the Chicago area. 

“It means everything to do our part in helping forge the international future of this sport we love,” Erlenbaugh said, according to the website.

Erlenbaugh, who leads the national team, also choreographs the EG Varsity team. 

Matus never expected to cheer on the national team. He got involved in cheerleading because of his sister, who was previously on the varsity team, and a few of his friends who encouraged him to try the new sport. 

“Starting from nothing to being really good,” Matus said. “It’s really impressive.”

The US Junior Coed National Team has, as of publishing, performed at one competition and done two showcases. 

Aside from attending competitions and showcases, Matus attends weekend practices that last up to four hours.

Alongside competitive cheerleading at EG and the Coed team, Matus played on the varsity soccer team at EGHS and plans on attending Harper College.