YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - The Gila Ridge High School Hawks spirit line competition team will be traveling to Anaheim for USA Spirit Nationals.
“You know with things of COVID and everything kind of everything stopped so it’s kind of nice to get the program going back. So last year was our first year competing again so it’s kind of nice to [go from] we’re fifth in state last year now we’re going to nationals so it’s a big improvement in one year so it’s pretty awesome,” said the Hawks head coach, Jenae Bailey.
This is the first time the team has made it to nationals in five years.
The Hawks placed first in regionals, assuring them a chance to compete in the next round.
One cheerleader on the team expressed how it felt coming in first.
“It was great cause we competed against really good teams that we saw like at state or just previous competitions before and they intimidate me personally so I know that they probably intimidated other people so knowing that we can beat them then like it’s just a good feeling,” said the team's base, Janelle Wells.
Going to nationals also means a lot to these cheerleaders, as they are not only representing their school but their town as well.
“Competing at nationals for me I think it’s just a big step forward for Yuma because we’re a small little area but I think it shows we’re really dedicated to our sport and that we should be seen because even though we come from a small little town but we can do something really big,” said Abby Shew, the team's captain.
The cheerleaders will compete next week from February 16th to 18th for a chance to win the national title.