By Paul Adkins Sports Editor
April 10, 2014
Five competitions down and one to go.
It’s been a long but successful season for the Logan-based Cheeriffic All-Stars youth cheerleading squad.
With Charlotte behind them, Cheeriffic is now shifting its focus to the season ending U.S. Finals in Virginia Beach, Va., May 3-4.
The national tournament, one of five held across the country, brings in cheerleading squads from all across the nation.
Cheeriffic turned in yet another outstanding performance last weekend in Charlotte, N.C., as all three squads took first place and all three won Grand Championships.
It was a complete sweep as Cheeriffic dominated the field, taking the highest three scores out of all of the teams in Charlotte.
Cheeriffic’s three teams — the Mini 1, the Youth Level 2 and the Junior Level 3 — rolled to first-place finishes in the Jam Live event.
The Youth Level 2 squad received a Platinum Bid for the U.S. Finals, the second Cheeriffic team to pull off the feat this season. Earlier in the year, the Junior Level 3 team won the Platinum Bid, which is handed out to only a few squads each year across the United States.
In fact, only 29 Platinum Bids have been received so far this season nationwide and two of those have been won by Cheeriffic teams.
The coveted Platinum Bid, which pays for at least part of the winning team’s hotel stay at the U.S. Finals, is considered a highwater award in the world of all-star youth cheerleading.
In addition, all three Cheeriffic teams had already wrapped up paid bids for the U.S. finals meaning each cheerleader’s entry fee will be waived.
That’s a good thing, too, considering it costs money for each cheerleader just to enter any given event.
It’s been a remarkable season for Cheeriffic and its girls as the team has racked up many first-place finishes and has won many trophies, banners and medals.
The Junior Level 3 team — the oldest squad Cheeriffic has fielded this year — has not been defeated. This season, the Junior Level 3 team has took five first places in five events held so far. The squad also has four grand championships and one Platinum Bid.
The Youth Level 2 team has four firsts, one third, three Grand Championships and one Platinum Bid.
Cheeriffic’s youngest team — the Mini 1 squad — has three first-place finishes and two seconds this season.
The Cheeriffic All-Star teams are coached by Heather Bryant and Brittney Hartman.
“Once again Cheeriffic has been blessed beyond measure,” Hartman said. “Not only did these talented teams get crowned first, but now two of the three squads have been awarded the Platinum Bid to the U.S. Finals. This type of bid is new. Out of thousands of all-star teams, they only gave out 29 platinum bids this season. It is a huge honor to be awarded just one and Cheeriffic has brought home two.These girls went into this competition with a goal and they left the competition accomplishing that goal — with first place. As a coach, I could not be more proud of the teams. They just keep amazing more and more with each competition they go to.”
Added Bryant, “As this season begins to wind down I’m reflecting back to our first competition of this season and all I can say is wow! Each team has made major improvements and have added more difficulty with each competition. I was speechless as each team conquered the goals we had we had set out for them to obtain. I’m so very proud to have the opportunity to work with such hard working dedicated girls. I’m very blessed to have such awesome support from their parents. Thanking God for His faithfulness. Look out U.S. Finals here we come!”
Cheeriffic has competed in five events this season in five different states in; Columbus, Ohio; Gatlinburg, Tenn.; Indianapolis, Ind.; Louisville, Ky.; and Charlotte, N.C.
The team had originally planned to compete in an event next week in The Bahamas aboard a cruise ship but the competition was cancelled a couple of months ago by event organizers.
Cheeriffic is hoping to win a national championship for the third straight year.
In 2012 the Cheeriffic Tiny and Mini teams won national titles in the final Spirit Rankings. Then last year, the Cheeriffic Mini 1 and Youth Level 1 were crowned as national champs.
Out of 15 possible first-place finishes this season, Cheeriffic teams have grabbed 12 firsts, two seconds and a third.
Cheeriffic began practices for the season back in late August and have worked very hard. The team has practice almost every day on the weekends and also spends time at Logan’s downtown Flip and Twist Gym to work on gymnastics.