Angel Herrera is the newest Warrior Girl.
She was named last week to the dance squad of the National Basketball Association’s Golden State Warriors.
“I was so excited to discover I made (the Warrior Girls),” said Herrera Wednesday at Dance and Cheer Stars, where she also teaches the boys hip-hop class.
The 2010 graduate of Manteca High became the latest from the Manteca studio to earn a spot on the sidelines of a major professional sports franchise.
Harmony Flores Rebeiro, owner and operator of Dance Stars, was the first. She spent two years as a Raiderette.
Jonni Rogers and Jessica Maxwell are currently cheerleaders for the Oakland Raiders. Rogers is in her fourth year as a Raiderette while Maxwell is in her second year.
Michelle Breitmaier and Maggie Schreiber were both San Francisco 49ers’ Gold Rush cheerleaders.
Herrera, 19, is just the second from Dance Stars to make it on an NBA squad. Althea Ochoa was once a member of the Sacramento Kings’ Royal Court dancers.
Angel Herrera, who is the daughter of James and Myrna Herrera of Manteca, credited Flores Rebeiro and others for helping her prepare for the Warrior Girl tryouts.
On July 30, Herrera, who specializes in Jazz and hip-hop, was among the nearly 250 aspiring dancers who made the auditions held at the Sports Club-San Ramon.
She and her sister had previously tried out for the Los Angeles Clippers dance squad. Herrera, who spent three years on the Manteca High cheer squad, was among the final cuts.
She soon discovered that the Warrior Girl tryouts would be a tedious weeding out process that included narrowing the field to 30 finalists who, in turn, would be sent to a month-long boot camp.
Those who made it through the four-hour, two-days-a-week sessions then took part in the beauty pageant-style finals held at Oracle Arena.
“This was the first time (the selection process) was done this way,” Herrera said. “One of the new owners did it that way with his previous team.”
Flores Rebeiro and Rogers attended the event consisting of swimsuit, formal wear and dance.
With 17 available spots, Herrera knew it would be tough to make the squad, especially with 13 returning Warrior Girls among the 30 finalists.
“That left only four slots,” she said.
As one of four rookies, Herrera noted that her selection was also bittersweet.
“During that month in boot camp, we all became real close,” she said. “We even became best friends.”
Despite the current NBA lockout, Herrera will still be kept busy with her Warrior Girls obligations. She just inked her contract and has plenty of practices, photo shoots, and public appearances ahead.
She’s looking forward to it.