(LEX 18) — Turn on the TV this Sunday, and you might see Hannah Montgomery on the sidelines of Super Bowl LVI.
But before she was a Ben-Gal cheerleader, she was a graduate of Scott County High School, and she grew up dancing all across the Bluegrass.
"I don't think it will feel real until I come home and I'm like, 'What did I just experience?'" Montgomery told LEX 18 as she was getting ready to fly to Los Angeles on Thursday.
Growing up in Georgetown, "I did competitive dance," Montgomery said. "So, a lot of fun memories."
The 2015 high school graduate cheered on the Cardinals and picked up the pom-poms again at Northern Kentucky University. But for the past four years, Montgomery has spent every football season performing as a Ben-Gal. The commitment includes twice-weekly practices and long game days spent at Paul Brown Stadium – and that's on top of her day job as a purchasing assistant.
All that effort has led up to this weekend and a once-in-a-lifetime trip to see the Bengals take on the Rams.
"It's a huge come-up," Montgomery said of the team's growth in recent years. In 2019, she attended the Senior Bowl in Alabama, when the Bengals were ranked near the bottom of the NFL. Just two years later, the team is making a Super Bowl appearance, and Montgomery is excited to represent Cincinnati on a national scale.
"You get to meet people who may never have any other interaction with Cincinnati or any other interaction with a cheerleader," she said.
As of Friday night, Montgomery is already in California preparing for the game. Her husband – a die-hard Bengals fan himself – also got a ticket, and so did Montgomery's mother-in-law. That means they get to see her perform on her biggest stage yet, as the Bluegrass girl takes on the Super Bowl.
It will be Montgomery's last season as a Ben-Gal, and she's hoping it ends on a high note with a historic win.