SULPHUR — Often times in the world of cheerleading, it’s easy to get distracted from outside noise.

Editors Note: This is part of a series profiling the finalists for the 2019 Cheerleader of the Year award, which will be announced at the Best of the Arbuckles Preps banquet in May. 

SULPHUR — Often times in the world of cheerleading, it’s easy to get distracted from outside noise.

Sulphur’s Presley McClure though doesn’t get deterred though by those who doubt her, she uses them as ways to spread a more powerful message. 

“We need to open our eyes and realize cheer is not just about appearance,” McClure said. “You don’t have to be short and little to be a cheerleader. It’s about what you can do on the floor, and how you can fire up the crowd and how great of a teammate you can be.” 

“I’m intelligent and not super thin,” McClure added. “I want to show the young girls that this is a very real dream for them. Nothing has ever come easy to me in cheer, but I’ve refused to give up on my goals.”

McClure’s resume speaks for itself not just from a classroom standpoint, but from a cheer perspective.

Aside from maintaining a 4.0 GPA and scoring a 29 on her ACT exam, McClure has also been concurrently enrolled in college classes both her junior and senior years at Sulphur High School.

On top of countless hours of community service projects, she is also a member of the Oklahoma and National Honor Society, and has served as the FCCLA Vice President from 2016-19.

“I try to keep my priorities straight,” McClure said. “God comes first, then cheer. It’s about keeping things in perspective and making sure things run smoothly and are prioritized properly.” 

As for cheer, McClure has plenty of hardware to silence her critics.

Her accomplishments include being a two-time state academic champion with Sulphur, a two-time national champion as a member of the Oklahoma Outlaws competitive cheer squad, as well as being an All-Star cheerleader from 2013-18, and a recipient of the Top Gun Stunt award. 

“Cheering for Sulphur has been like being apart of one big family,” McClure said. “This has been like having a group of sisters. We work so hard together, go to cheer camps together, and just bond.”

“Coach (Destiny) Baker has been a great influence for me,” McClure added. “She pushes us to be better than we are, but still maintains such a strong program with us. Being able to cheer on all the sports in a community like Sulphur is incredible. This community has been such a blessing to me.”

McClure added one more title to her already stacked resume this past December, when she was named as a member of the All-Ardmoreite Cheer team, and a finalist for the Cheerleader of the Year award.

She said that winning the award wouldn’t just mean her hard work has paid off, but give hope to so many who want to follow in her footsteps.

“Winning the award would justify to people that anyone can be a cheerleader and be successful,” McClure said. “I want to be able to represent not just my team and my community, but everyone who has a dream to be a cheerleader. Cheer is something that I hold so close to my heart.”

After graduation, McClure plans to attend East Central University in Ada, with the intent of studying to becoming a pharmacist in the future, while trying out for the Lady Tigers cheer squad.