Sports

Lady Hawks cheerleading coach named best in state

It’s pretty tough to pull anything over Eileen Uson’s eyes. The longtime Federal Way resident has heard all the excuses in the world. She is the mother of four, who are all under the age of 13.

“It’s hard to keep a secret from me,” Uson said.

But that’s exactly what a lot of people did recently by not telling Uson that she was going to be awarded the prestigious 2008 Washington State Cheer Coaches Association Recreation Coach of the Year at the WSCCA’s annual convention.

“I had no clue,” Uson said. “(They) conspired to get me down to the cheer convention. My boyfriend told me that he was taking me to a cheer convention. I knew I would enjoy it, but I thought he would do something a little more romantic for me. But then the first award given out, they announced my name. It was really touching.”

Uson has been the cheer director for the Federal Way Lady Hawks Junior Program for the past three years and has volunteered hundreds of hours to the group. The Lady Hawks cheer for the Federal Way Hawks Junior Football Association games. The Federal Way Hawks have been in continuous operation since 1970, providing the only non-school football program in the Federal Way area.

“I was a cheerleader in high school and now my (three) daughters cheer for the Hawks,” Uson said. “And my son plays football for the Hawks. We are kind of a Hawks family. My life is the Hawks.”

Uson was nominated for the award by parents and coaches, who wrote letters of recommendation into the WSCCA.

One of the letters read, in part, “I have seen her desire and determination to make our franchise one to be respected and to give our girls the tools to be their best on and off the field... Her attitude is positive and outlook is fresh and new. She is always looking for ways to improve instead of dwelling on what went wrong. She never makes excuses. We have gone from finishing last or not placing at all to third place last year and winners of the Spirit Cup two years in a row.”

The Federal Way Lady Hawks are currently practicing two hours a day, four days a week in preparation for the season, which kicks off Aug. 23 against the Enumclaw Wolverines. The Lady Hawks has 95 girls signed up.

“It’s nice to know that I made a difference,” Uson said. “I just wanted to give the kids a program to come to. I didn’t want them out playing video games or getting in trouble. I just wanted to make a difference and be there for my girls.”

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565, sports@fedwaymirror.com

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