Someone You Should Know


India Steward

Super Athlete, Cheerleader and Student! 

(Always bringing her 'A' game.)


By Cynthia Fitch


One of our goals at Amateur Sports is to highlight our Athletic & Academic Achievers (Amateur Sports News Network's Team of A.A.A).  During Inaugural Issue, I met India, a young Matteson Bears Varsity Cheerleader, who just struck me as an awesome person.  I just loved to watch her tumble and cheer, and we took lots pictures of her and her team in action.  It was always one of the highlights of the football games to see her spell out M-A-T-T-E-S-O-N B-E-A-R-S on the sidelines doing back flips often ending with a back tuck.  She always had a smile of her face and seemed so positive and energetic.  Well after sitting down with India and her family, I found out that there is much more to this young lady than being a super cheerleader.


ASNN: When and how did you get started Sports?

INDIA: I started in sports when I was about 5 or 6 years old playing baseball, following in my brother's footsteps.

ASNN: How many do you participate in now?

INDIA: Four - Basketball & Track (Colin Powell Eagles), Cheerleading (Matteson Bears) , and Softball (fast pitch with the Sparks).  Our softball team is a traveling team and we've gone to some great places like Washington D.C, Texas, Oklahoma, etc.  This year we are planning to go to Georgia.


ASNN: What sport/activity has been your biggest challenge? Why? 

INDIA:: Fast pitch Softball. It's very competitive.  At first, I didn't understand the rules because they are different from baseball. I was also originally a right hand batter, but under their new format I had to change to my left hand.  Every year you have to try out for the team.   There are usually about 500 girls that try out and they only accept about 13. I play shortstop and the outfield.

ASNN: I guess you're pretty good then, huh? 

INDIA: I guessÉI just try to do my best.


ASNN: What did you like most about cheerleading?
INDIA: Stunting, cheering, dancing, flips - everything.  I like performing in front of people. 

ASNN:   Congratulations on a clean-sweep at the Will-Cook Cheer competition. How did you feel when you found out


all 4 teams won 1st Place?
INDIA:  I was s-o happy.  We worked really hard. 
ASNN:   Do you plan to continue?
INDIA:  Yes, in High School

ASNN: We got a chance to see you play basketball at Colin Powell's for the championship.  How was that experience for you?

INDIA: I love playing basketball for Colin Powell. We won our championship game and I am so excited to go

down state.  I hope we at least place in the top 4.

ASNN: What female athletes are your role models?

Candace Parker with the LA Sparks (WNBA)

ASNN: I hear that not only are you a good athlete, but you are also an A student.


What is your exact GPA? 

INDIA: 4.0 

ASNN: Favorite subject? 

INDIA: Literature 

ASNN:  How do you find the time to study enough to get those grades? 

INDIA:  I keep my books with me and study before practice, during breaks at practice, everywhere I can and I keep flash cards with me.  I use flashcards a lot to help me remember my notes.

ASNN: Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years? 

INDIA:  In college majoring in Criminal Justice.

ASNN: Are there any H.S. that you are considering that you can mention? 

INDIA: Yes, Marion Catholic, Marist and Mother McAuley. 

ASNN: What's on your Ipod? 

INDIA: Rap (Lil Wayne), R&B (Beyonce – especially  "Single Ladies," Gospel (Kirk Franklin)

ASNN: Favorite Movie(s)?

INDIA: Home Alone, Parent Trap, and Cars
ASNN: Favorite Food:

INDIA:  Everything...LOL!!!!


India's mom, Sharon, also informed us that while in 5th Grade at Marya Yates, India won 1st place in District 159's Resolution Writing Competition Honoring African American Leaders.


Academic achievement runs in the Steward family - India's brother is a force to be reckoned with as well.  He's a graduate of Colin Powell Middle School and was ranked number 9 in his class. He has also won numerous awards in baseball and football.  He currently attends Rich South high school. and is on the track and baseball team.  Next year, he plans to play on the football team. 




Mike and Sharon Steward are firm believers that athletics is a privilege earned by academic achievement.  "Our kids know that we support them and love to watch them at their games and tournaments, but they know they must make sure that their studies come first."



We thought this story would be an inspiration as well as an example for ALL of our students-athletes in order to demonstrate that if you work hard, you too can have it ALL – on the field of play and more importantly, in the classroom!


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