01/30/2013 03:57 pm ET Updated Jan 31, 2013

Courtney Lenz, Ravens Cheerleader, Excluded From Super Bowl; Petition Launched to Reinstate Her

Rah deal?

A Baltimore Ravens cheerleader who told the team she was quitting after the season says she has been unfairly left off the squad for the Super Bowl, according to the Baltimore Sun.

The alleged snub of Courtney Lenz sparked an online petition and Facebook drive to reinstate her. Thousands had posted their support as of Wednesday afternoon after Lenz reached out for help.

The team had promised that all cheerleaders with at least three years' experience would qualify for the Super Bowl, the petition said. Lenz, 23, of Baltimore, had been with the team for five years. The petition noted that Lenz was the only veteran barred from performing.

The Ravens defended Lenz's omission, telling ABC they trimmed the 60-member squad to the NFL-allowed 32 for the big game based on seniority, performance and personal conduct. Lenz said she believed the team was retaliating for her leaving the squad.

On the Facebook page titled "Help Us Get Courtney To Superbowl," Lenz wrote she was told by the team that she had a "rough year." She also said she had been benched for a few games because she had gained weight -- "no more than two pounds" she added.

The Baltimore Ravens will face off against the San Francisco 49ers in New Orleans on Sunday, Feb. 3. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 EST. About 150,000 Super Bowl fans are expected in the city, according to the Associated Press.