Photo courtesy of Kevin Brooks.
The Hoover High School 2016-17 competitive cheerleading squad celebrates their seventh-place finish in the super varsity division of the Universal Cheerleading Association national competition in Orlando on Feb. 12.
The Hoover High School competition cheerleading squad placed seventh in the super varsity division of the Universal Cheerleading Association’s national competition in Orlando on Feb. 12.
The 36-member squad was one of eight teams to make the finals. Most of the teams that made the finals have had competition teams for 15 to 20 years, and several had won national championships in previous years.
"Our entire trip was such a wonderful and successful experience,” Hoover coach Meri-Glenn Freeman said in a press release. “To place among the nation's elite is something I am incredibly proud of, especially with our program still being new to the competitive world. These student athletes have worked extremely hard to represent Hoover High and our community on the big stage, and I am so glad their hard work was recognized."
Hoover High Athletic Director Andy Urban said he was very thankful for the hard work put in by the cheerleaders and coaches.
“These ladies put in countless hours,” he said. “To be seventh in the nation is outstanding.”
Sydney Eads, one of the senior captains, said her experience at the national competition was amazing.
“Since it's only our third year competing, we are still laying a foundation for our program,” Eads said. “We set the bar high this weekend by not only accomplishing our goal of making finals but also leaving it all on the mat with no regrets."
Anna Mardis, another captain, said nothing can take away the feeling of performing well at nationals after they worked so hard. She can’t wait to see how the program improves in the future, she said.
The complete team was comprised of senior captains Amber Ajlouny, Sydney Eads and Anna Mardis, seniors Kara Brooks, Emily Couch, Sydney Garlington, Hannah Henley, Ashley Lawson, Katelyn Richard and Hayden Woods, juniors Olivia Bishop, Lexi Conner, Mia Gage, Grace Heglas, Ashley Hopping, Senna House, Maddie Lee and Amelia Snider, sophomores Hanna Cate Armstrong, Skylar Bennett, Harrison Bevis, Grace Bonner, Katie Beth Brooks, Catherine Calvano, Elizabeth Knerr, Presley Lankford, Mackenzie Massey, Noel Rengering, Lauren Thompson, Morgan Vanlandingham and Brooke Weilder, and freshmen Emma Cunningham, Lauren Halcomb, Mallory Mardis, Holly Prince and Anna Snider.
The team was coached by Meri-Glenn Freeman, Rebecca Grier and Tammi Elsea.