National bound

Alex Ebeling, Staff Reporter

On November 14, the Bellefonte cheerleaders competed in a competition held at Slippery Rock University. This was a regional competition for all of Pennsylvania to receive a bid to the UCA National Cheerleading Championships in Orlando, Florida in February.  

The Bellefonte Cheer Squad competes in this competition annually. In order to receive the national bid the squad must earn a score high enough to qualify. 

In order to train for this competition the team, “used games to practice our crowd cheers and also practiced many hours to prepare,” Coach Prestie Headings said.

The cheer team went out and performed their routine and scored in the 80% range. This score was high enough to qualify for the national event. 

“The team had lots of energy and spirit and did a great job representing Bellefonte,” Coach Headings said. “A bid is only given to teams that earn the score and the judges think deserve a spot at the National Event. The UCA Nationals are all the top teams in the United States.”

Receiving a national bid this year tallied up the program’s third straight bid. This national event is the “biggest competition for high school cheer,” according to Coach Headings.

The team was very excited to receive the bid. Junior student-athlete Natalie Mattern was happy for the opportunity presented for the team. 

“We can go to the national cheer competition in Florida to compete against the whole nation,” she said. 

According to Natalie, the team practiced many times a week and trained as though they were preparing for the competition. Others on the team reflected on the performance as well. 

“I felt proud of how our team performed and thought we had a lot of spirit,”  junior Emma Matsko said.

 Their hard work and hours of practice helped the team place sixth in their respective division.