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For the first time since 2006 the SCHS cheerleading squad will be heading back to the state competition.
The girls won the 8th Region small varsity competition Saturday at SCHS, and Coach Heather Fallen said it was a long time coming.
“It’s been a big year for us as far as preparation,” she said. “We’ve been practicing hard since June, and we set some pretty high expectations.”
The squad took 8th place at the KAPOS State competition in 2006, Fallen’s first year as the head coach, but missed out the last two years. The squad has competed in the Sweet 16 competition, taking fourth place in 2006 and 2008 with the boys’ basketball team.
“It’s a lot of fun to compete at the Sweet 16 with the team,” Fallen said. “But we had to win our region to get to this competition.”
Despite Shelby County’s size as a school, Fallen said the team competes in the small varsity division because of the difficulty of the routine.
“All 12 girls do a standing back-tuck, which is basically a back flip without using your hands,” she said. “So that was the number of girls that we have that could do it.”
The state competition will be held Feb. 14 at Diddle Arena on the Western Kentucky University campus in Bowling Green, but Fallen said the team will be ready to show Shelby County their routine a little earlier.
“We can’t do our full routine during basketball games, because we can’t pull the mats and everything out,” she said. “So on the Thursday before [Feb. 12], we’re going to have a competition send-off. That way people can come out and see the routine. We’ve done parts of it at games, but this way everybody in the community can see the whole routine.”
Fallen also noted that the send-off will be a fundraiser for the team.
“We may charge a $1, and then any donations will be accepted,” she said.
When the girls do finally take the stage, Fallen said her team will be ready.
“Our goal is the top five,” she said. “I feel like we have a great chance, based on who was in the top five last year, and what they did. We’re just really excited to get down there and compete and represent our school.”