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PLAS wins state

Football season may still be a few weeks away, but the Pike Liberal Arts School cheerleaders have already found something to cheer about.

In fact, they can cheer on themselves after the AISA East State Cheerleading camp held on the campus of Huntington College. Both the junior varsity team and the varsity team won state championships. The girls returned to Troy Thursday tired but excited.

"This is very exciting," said varsity captain Tara Rodgers, hoarse from cheering every days since Monday. "We did a lot of shouting."

The varsity team finished first in the pom routine and first in the cheer competition, but the team failed to place in the extreme routine competition.

"We had a tumble routine run into the stunt, but the stunt stayed in place," varsity sponsor Katie Scott said. "We were concerned about the overall championship because of that, and that made it more exciting when we won the state championship."

Pike Lib. won the championship out of approximately 30 squads. Not all AISA schools were represented; the western half of the AISA will compete in another camp later in the month.

Several cheerleaders won individual awards as well during the week. Rodgers and co-captain Abbey McKeller were named AISA All-Stars and will perform for the AISA all-star basketball and football games. Also, Rodgers, Blakely Mitchell and Amy Reeves were named to the UCA all-star team.

McKeller and Reeves also finished tied for second in the varsity jump off.

The junior varsity team was also victorious in its quest for a second consecutive championship. The JV team finished first in the pom routine, first in cheer and second in extreme routine despite suffering two serious injuries during the week.

"We had two girls get hurt during the week we were there, and we still won the state championship," JV sponsor Brooke Terry said. "That is amazing."

Five of the cheerleaders were named to the all-star squad as well. Carolline Sunday, Haley Walters, Rachel Anderson, Erika Strother and Sarah Taylor were all named all-stars. Anderson also won the jump-off in the junior varsity division.