EPHRAIM—The Snow College cheer team took second place in the large co-ed show cheer division at the United Spirit Association Collegiate Championships on Sunday, Feb. 27 in Anaheim, California.
In 2018, the cheer squad made program history by claiming the national title. The team’s hope was to do it again, but they are happy with second place given a few of the challenges they faced throughout the season.
One of those challenges was getting a new coach halfway through the year. Shawn Gubeli was officially announced as the head coach of Snow College cheer in early February.
“I am extremely proud of how the team came together in the end,” Gubeli said. “I knew that I was going to have high expectations of how I wanted this team to perform because I take it serious[ly].”
As a coach, he wanted those to remain on the team that could match the same level of pride for the team that he had, and, in the end, he said they did exactly what they set out to do.
They ended the season with 14 total members, 13 of whom competed on the floor because one was out with an injury.
Gubeli started his cheer career at Snow College in 2009-2011, and he is ready to help grow the program now that he has returned. He wants the cheer team to become top-ranked in the junior college division.
He said the state of Utah is full of talented teams and is ready to have Snow College added to the list.
“We have Weber State, which is an amazing program, where they compete in Daytona, Florida at the National Cheerleaders Association along with UVU. The high school teams here in Utah are growing and have talented programs as well,” Gubeli said. “My goal is to constantly raise the bar each year when it comes to skills and push the team to excel at a much more competitive level.”
The team puts in a lot of work by practicing Mondays through Thursdays from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m., in addition to supporting all the athletic programs at Snow College and throughout the community.
The plans for the future of Snow cheer are simple, he said—setting higher expectations than ever before.
“I didn’t take this position as head coach just to have people come and participate. I took it with one goal in mind: become a top competitive junior college cheer team,” he said.
He said that as a team, they are requiring skills on a level that has never been set before. They are training harder and longer to get to that level and are recruiting and seeking out athletes all over to come and make the dream a reality.
Gubeli started his cheer career at Snow College as a freshman in 2009 and then went on to cheer at Southern Utah University in 2011. He is also a head instructor for the United Spirit Association with Varsity Cheer, teaching summer camps. He was the assistant coach for Juab High School cheer for seven years and choreographed and won six state championship titles.
In his regular day to day job, he is a small business account manager for Verizon. He said that it is his personal dream to open and run his very own All-Star cheer and tumbling gym in the Nephi area.
Gubeli has been married to his wife Janae since March 2012. They have five kids: one girl and four boys.