Cheer team reaches semi finals at nationals

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The Baldwin competitive cheer team won the South Hills Showdown over the weekend.

Brenna Green and Natalie Zgurich

The competitive cheerleading team returned Tuesday from a challenging final competition of the season, the UCA Nationals in Orlando.

The Highlanders placed tenth overall in the semifinals of the mat competition and eleventh overall in the preliminary round for the game day competition. The game day competition involves more of the cheering that is seen on the sidelines of sporting events, while the mat competition involves more tumbling and stunts.

The girls competition weekend began with the mat team’s best routine of the season, senior Sarah Dempsey said. The team hit all of their stunts and tricks for the first time, she said.

“We did really well at working together during the routine,” Dempsey said.

Due to the success of this routine, they ranked among the top teams of their division, enabling them to advance to the semifinals.

Senior Kaitlyn Joyce said the team performed well in their semifinals routine, but fell short of advancing further.

Although the girls achieved their goal of improving their scores from last year, the competition was at a higher level this year, so they were unable to increase their ranking as well, Joyce said.

After wrapping up their cheer season, the Highlanders enjoyed two days in Disney World.

“It was great to spend my last competition with my best friends in the best place,” Dempsey said.