The Oilers' Mackenzie CoxWOOD RIVER - East Alton-Wood River senior Mackenzie Cox has devoted four years to cheer and is a star in multiple sports.

Mackenzie is a Midwest Members Credit Union Female Athlete of the Month for the Oilers.

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She said she has had constant support at East Alton-Wood River High School from a broad range of individuals: “I would like to thank my parents, best friends, and grandparents for always supporting me throughout my sports career, my parents and grandparents attended every sporting event I have ever had ever since I was a child. Looking out into the stands and to the sideline to see their smiles has always been something to get me through my games.

"My mom has always been there to help me throughout all my games, and I am very thankful for her."

Alison Beachum is her cheer coach and Mackenzie thanked her for all her support and encouragement.

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"Something I like most about cheer is that it brings everyone together at the games, looking out into the stands and seeing all the faces of the fans and parents for the students at our school have been something I like and it helps keep the school spirit alive," she said.

She continued: "I enjoy staying active in the community and also ref for the Rec center, I stay busy in and out of school with different clubs like student council, theater, spirit club, and many different clubs in the school. Sports have always been a part of my life, ever since I was a kid. I have been in different sports and activities that helped me become the person I am today, it has built my leadership skills and helped me become a person who recognizes challenge, accepts it, and tries to beat it."

Mackenzie said she hopes to play a sport in college but not cheer.

"I am hearing from a few different schools with scholarship opportunities for my grades as well as my goalie skills in girl's soccer," she said. "I am interested in College of the Ozarks as well as Ole Miss for a few of my choices to attend college. I am interested in being a middle school English teacher, teaching has always called me since I was in the fourth grade. I would also like to minor in Spanish and psychology if possible. I try and keep my grades as high as possible and I push myself to the fullest potential I can. I have had a 4.0 for the past four years recently and I am in the honor system."

The East Alton-Wood River girl is a tri-sport athlete. In addition to her role as a cheerleader, she is a soccer team captain and goalie and also a post player in basketball.

"Something that I would recommend to other students is getting involved as much as you can, to make memories, have fun, and spend time with friends and family," she said. "You only live and get a chance at experiences like these once so take it while you can."

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