Mountie Maniacs gear up for winter

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Amber Quinn, Staff Writer

Students of all ages have started to take part in the growing tradition of clearing their schedules on Friday nights. As they leave classes that day, their anticipation grows with excitement as they throw off their backpacks and prepare for the night to come.

But why would high school students jeopardize their social lives during the school year? To let their wild side out and show some school spirit, of course.

All across the country, student-inspired fan sections are popping up — and they are oozing with spirit.
These groups, called student sections, are typically created by the seniors of the school that believe in supporting their peers during school sporting events. The Stroudsburg Mountaineers are arguably best known for their student section: The Mountie Maniacs. Papers, such as the Pocono Record, have covered the Maniacs and have started a sort of competition between schools in the surrounding area.

Former head coach Mr. Shawn Thornton came up with the Maniacs in order to create an environment that allowed all students to get involved. In the early ’90s Thornton put together a video to advertise the idea of a student section and played it for the school to watch.

“I’m glad the group has kept itself going,” Thornton said.

The Mountie Maniacs have grown into a group with a great reputation of iconic events that take place during school games.

Other schools may have caught on to the role that student sections play during games. The pressure coming from the non-stop shouting and chanting seems to have a negative effect on opposing teams. Thornton can recall one game in particular that showed the Mounties have what it takes to support their school.

If you call yourself a Maniac and don’t recall the name Danny Chun, you should be ashamed. Now a TV producer, Chun was the leader of the Maniacs in the late ’90s. During the Stroudsburg vs. Emmaus district semifinal, chants could be heard coming from both sides of the gymnasium. As the last seconds began to tick off the clock, with Stroudsburg in the lead, the Mounties were heard chanting, “Warm up the buses!” In return Emmaus countered, “Warm up the tractors!” The riled up Mounties screamed, “J-Crew” only to be shot down by Emmaus insinuating that they were the smarter school by proclaiming, “SATs!” Normally Coach Thornton wouldn’t be caught watching the Mounties partake in a spirit battle, but on that night Thornton says he shook his head in laughter as he watched the Maniacs lift Danny Chun (wearing his referee jersey) over their heads: he scored a perfect 1600 on his SATs.
East Stroudsburg South, Freedom, and Pocono Mountain East all have newly created student sections. Their names all correspond to the mascot representing the school. The Cavaliers (South), The Nest (East), and The Riot Squad (Freedom) can be found at any home game during the school year.

The most common way to get in touch with these sections is by the popular social media website ai???Twitterai???.

  • @SouthSideCavs:
    This Twitter page allows students from South to be aware of the schedules concerning the teams at the school. It also makes students aware of the apparel for that game (whether it be a Whiteout or Blackout). #CavNation is ready to ride into battle any Friday night of the year.
  • @CardinalNest:
    Run by students, this Twitter page posts the times and places of important games during the year. Many ai???Red-outsai??? are planned and made known by the tweets of The Nest. This fairly new section is ready to let their students spread their wings and make some noise.
  • @FHSRiotSquad:
    Seniors of Freedom take their jobs as the runners of this page very seriously. Not only does the Riot Squad let students know what to wear to games, but they also let students know what is going on in the school. Student-run fundraisers can be found on this page along with events coming up during the year. It seems as though the Riot Squad has begun to live up to their daunting name.
  • @MountieManiacs:
    The world may never know who actually runs the Mountie Maniac page. As it was passed down through the years, graduating seniors have passed on their knowledge to who they see fit to run the page. Dates and times of games can be found on the page along with scores of past games. #MountieNation is supported by people of all ages on Twitter, including Superintendent Dr. John Toleno, ai???…#playhard#stayfocused#neverquit.ai??? This year the Maniacs will make sure to leave a lasting impression.

Dating back to the fall sport seasons of 1992, the Mountie Maniacs are the longest running student section in the Monroe County area. Although other schools have tried to compete against the Maniacs with makeshift student sections, the Stroudsburg Mountaineers always come out swinging. Whether you find the Maniacs reading newspapers while the other teamai??i??s starting lineup is announced or dressing in their best reffing apparel as they call for the official to ai???take a subai???, the students and faculty believe they act all in good fun.
More recently, the Mounties were found storming the basketball court and waving goodbye to PV as they hung their heads from a hard defeat. Of course this was only to celebrate Coach Thorntonai??i??s 300th win…right?
SHS principal Mr. Jeffrey Sodl is a big fan of the Maniacs. ai???The school spirit is outstanding. The Maniacs add to the atmosphere of the games”.

As the years go on, more and more student sections will become prominent in high schools. Students coming together to support their peers will not only help their attitude towards the school environment, but will also create memories that last a life time.

In 10 years time, when people pull up to their high school for a reunion, theyai??i??ll be transported back to a time when they were carefree, rowdy, and happy, making noise in a sweaty gym full of kids feeling the same exact way.