By Paul Adkins Sports Editor
December 10, 2013
GATLINBURG, Tenn. — It might go down as one of the best weekends ever for the Logan-based Cheeriffic All-Star cheerleaders.
Cheeriffic took three squads over the weekend to the America’s Best Two-Day Championships Dec. 7-8 at the Gatlinburg Convention Center in Gatlinburg, Tenn.
All three of Cheeriffic’s teams won first place and two of the squads — Junior Level 3 and the Youth 2 — were crowned Grand Champions with the highest score in its divisions out of the dozens and dozens of teams which competed.
It was the second competition in a row the Cheeriffic Junior Level 3 team was named Grand Champion. The squad took the honor last month in a COA event in Columbus, Ohio.
Cheeriffic’s other team it took to Gatlinburg — the Mini Level 1 squad — was also successful as it earned first place in its five-team division and received a paid bid to the U.S. Finals National Championships, May 3-4 in Virginia Beach, Va.
In addition, the Cheeriffic Youth Level 2 team also received a paid bid to the U.S. Finals. In just two competitions all three of Cheeriffic’s all-star squads have already won paid bids to the national championships with its high scores.
In all, Cheeriffic brought home five championship trophies, three championship banners and dozens of medals.
It’s another great start to the season for Cheeriffic, which came on the national scene two years ago by being crowned overall national champions in the Tiny and Mini divisions. Last year, Cheeriffic brought home two more national titles to Logan by topping nearly 100 squads nationwide in the Mini 1 and Youth Level 1 dvisions. A UCA International Championship was also brought home to Logan last year from Orlando, Fla.
Cheeriffic is comprised of youth cheerleaders mostly from the Logan area. A handful of cheerleaders are from the Tug Valley school district.
Last weekend, the three Cheeriffic All-Star squads faced stiff competition in Tennessee against youth squads from all over the southeastern United States.
The Cheeriffic squads, coached by Heather Bryant and Brittney Hartman, dazzled the crowd with a high-energy, high-difficulty array of backflips, toe-touches, front punches, basket tosses and pyramid stands during their routines.
Hartman said she was thrilled with her team’s performance.
“I am so proud of the teams,” she said. “They performed above and beyond fabulous. These girls work so hard but more importantly, they know that their strength is a blessing from The Lord. A team that believes and prays together can and will win together. I am honored to be a coach in the Cheeriffic All-Stars program. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the season will bring.”
Bryant said it was the first time two of her squads had won grand championships in the same event.
“I feel so blessed and humbled that we were able to work with such amazing children,” she said. “They performed so well and have worked so hard.”
Cheeriffic and a squad from Princeton were the only two teams from the state of West Virginia at the event. Teams also came from Ohio, Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia and the home Volunteer State.
The Cheeriffic Junior Level 3 team won first place on Sunday and took the Level 3 Grand Championship. The local girls beat a couple of Tennessee powerhouses in the Knoxville Twisters and the Mpact Spirit Fire team from Brentwood, Tenn.
The Cheeriffic Level 1 Mini squad took first-place in its six-team division.
In second place were the Knoxville Twisters Waterspouts team. Taking third were the Champion Elite Sparkling Diamonds from Bristol, Va. Fourth were the Odyssey Tom Toms from Columbia, S.C. In fifth place were the World Xtreme Vipers of McDonough, Ga. Taking sixth were the Dynasty All-Stars of Princeton, W.Va.
In the Small Youth Level 2 division, the Cheeriffic All-Stars were first place and Grand Champions in its seven-team division, beating out the second-place Diamonds All-Stars Sass squad from Knoxville, Tenn. The Cheeriffic squad had the highest score out of all of the Level 2 squads in all of the divisions.
In third were the Clarksville Extreme from Clarksville, Tenn. Fourth place were the Hot Shots All-Stars Flames team from Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga. Fifth place were the Dynasty All-Stars from Princeton. Taking sixth were the Destiny Stars from Gallatin, Tenn. The seventh-place team was the East Kentucky Epic All-Stars from Pikeville, Ky.
The Cheeriffic Mini, Youth and Junior level teams led by wide margins on Saturday after the first day of the two-day event and stayed in first place on Sunday when the final scores were announced at the conclusion of the final day of competition.
All three Cheeriffic teams are scheduled to compete again Jan. 17-19 at the U.S. Super Nationals in Indianapolis, Ind.
The Cheeriffic All-Stars are also slated to compete during the 2013-14 season in Louisville, Ky., Virginia Beach and internationally in The Bahamas.