Panola College Twirlers announced


From left to right, Isabella Flesher, Amanda Zahn, Mallory Sims, and MaKayla Alexander Baker.

Beginning this spring semester, basketball halftime shows will feature performances by the Panola College Twirlers.

Panola College had Twirlers in the 90’s but it “kind of fizzled out,” according to team sponsor Kimberly Ferguson.  Ferguson suggested the return of the twirling group, and her energy and enthusiasm has made it happen. Ferguson began her own twirling career at in the Carthage school system beginning in the sixth grade. She twirled all through high school, and, after graduation, she tried out and was selected to become an SFA Twirl-o-Jack. After completing her bachelor’s degree, she continues to practice and has started teaching twirling.

The program was reintroduced primarily due to the lack of any Panola College Spirit Teams. In addition to simply performing, the twirlers will serve as a sort of ambassador for Panola College, participating in parades and other local events, giving them the opportunity to hone their networking skills.

Tryouts were held in late fall and resulted in four candidates making the team. The team consists of Head Twirler Malory Sims, Head Assistant Amanda Zahn, Sophomore Isabella Flesher and Freshman MaKayla Alexander Baker.

Malory Sims was active as a twirler in Center High School, serving as head twirler for two years. She has six years of twirling experience, and is currently in the music program and is a Health Science Major.

Amanda Zahn was active as a twirler in Tatum High School and has a total of seven years of twirling experience.  She is a General Studies Major.

Sophomore Isabella Flesher is from Henderson and learned to twirl under the tutelage of Paige Keitt at Precision Twirl. She is currently enrolled in the Drama program and has five years of twirling experience.

Freshman MaKayla Alexander Baker from Timpson has a total of eight years in experience twirling. She is currently enrolled in the Associate Degree Nursing Program.

The twirlers will attend practices and performances, with practices not to exceed 10 hours a week. Twirlers must maintain a minimum GPA requirement of 2.0. Performances to both pre-recorded music as well as band performances are planned. Their first performance is scheduled for halftime at the home basketball games on Saturday, Feb. 25.

Although the window of opportunity to join the team for this semester has closed, aspiring hopefuls can prepare for next year’s tryouts that will be held sometime in May.