n santana AOW

Natalia Santana

Senior

Natalie Santana, daughter of Jorge and Mirsa Santana, is this week’s Athlete of the Week. She is a senior at Independence High School and a member of the Varsity Cheer and Competition Cheer teams.

Santana is a 2021 UCA Gameday Live National Champion and a Regional Champion.

She started cheerleading after training in dance and tumbling for over six years. She tried out her sophomore year, made the team and has been cheering ever since. 

When asked what inspires her to continue training and competing she said, “Whenever I train, I push myself harder than I did the day before because it makes not only me, but my team as a whole, better.” 

IHS Varsity Football Cheer Coach Elizabeth Grindstaff said of Santana, “Natalia Santana is a Varsity Football cheerleader who excels in tumbling, stunting and leadership. She is the anchor of our INDY News, the painter of the infamous Senior Rock, a trusted student aide in the counseling center, an elite dancer at Hargest Dance Academy, a coach at Let It Shine gymnastics, and involved in a myriad of clubs and organizations.”

Her top role models in life are her parents. She said she looks up to them for their work ethics and positive outlooks.

Santana describes herself as ambitious, hardworking and motivated. When she’s not competing, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, and shopping.

After graduating from IHS, she plans to continue her cheerleading career at the collegiate level.