The 2022-23 Varsity Stunt Team Captains reflect on their high-school career


Caroline Hidde

The Varsity Stunt captains pose for a trio picture post-meet.

Dougherty Valley’s 2022-23 varsity stunt team is headed by senior co-captains Caroline Hidde and Tori Garcia, and junior captain Emily Suliguin. Despite facing interruptions for two years due to COVID, the trio has managed to make the most of their high school stunt career.

“I was introduced to stunt work during my freshman year. My coach recommended me and suggested that I try it out,” Suliguin explained. “I [ultimately] decided to join because of the good atmosphere… and meeting new people my age, who enjoy the same thing as I do.”

Similarly, Garcia and Hidde were on the DV cheer team together before joining the stunt program in their sophomore year. As multiple athletes compete on the cheer team in the fall and stunt in the spring, they work alongside a lot of familiar faces around the year.

“[Having the same people around] helped create a lot more team morale, and built us closer as a team while teaching us skills that are really useful,” Hidde reflected.

Prior to joining the team, Hidde competed in the cheer program at her previous schools in Florida and Minnesota. After moving to San Ramon, she began looking for competitive opportunities to showcase her talents. She found it within the close and comforting environment the DV stunt team nurtures.

“It’s so nice when your teammates are on the sidelines cheering you on [at meets],” Hidde said.

A typical meet consists of four quarters. The first quarter contains partner stunts, while the second one focuses on pyramids and tosses. The third quarter involves jumps and tumbling, and lastly, the fourth quarter is a combination of all the skills the team has shown. The difficulty of the stunts increases with each level.

“That feeling whenever we hit a stunt, when we successfully land it… it is probably the best feeling we all can get. Even if we’re not on the stage, just seeing our teammates hit the stunt is a great feeling,” Garcia said.

The varsity stunt team practices for hours on end each day, perfecting their technique and improving their communication and coordination. 

The effort it takes to practice and execute these stunts often goes unnoticed. The varsity stunt team practices for hours on end each day, perfecting their technique and improving their communication and coordination. 

“There are moments where we will goof off but then we also have a time to get things down and work. It’s a good balance,” Suliguin comments.

And as many competition moves are performed with a partner or in a small group, the team must trust one another and get to know their partners on a personal level.

We don’t have a ball… it’s our physical bodies that we’re working with. Just as long as we trust each other and keep our heads up, we’ll have good practices every day,” Garcia said.

Garcia also finds that her experience in the DVHS Leadership program has given her the skills it takes to lead her team and implement this balance. She believes that her leadership qualities and ability to stay optimistic are essential to the morale of the DV team.

“Using leadership and being optimistic is really important. You just have to be positive even when things start to look down,” Garcia said.

As their high school career draws to a close, the seniors reflect on the years they have spent within the Dougherty stunt program and the difficulties they overcame to earn their spot on the team that eventually became their family. 

“[Being a captain] is definitely something that is outside of my comfort zone, but it’s made me realize what I bring to the table, and what I can contribute to the team’s success,” Suliguin said.