February 19, 2014
The Avila University Cheer and Dance teams took home the 2014 Heart of America Athletic Conference Spirit Squad Championship this weekend at Baker University’s Collins Center in Baldwin City, KS.
Avila won the overall conference title (combining cheer and dance) with an overall score of 166.09. Baker finished second with a score of 152.46, followed by Graceland at 149.69. The Avila Cheer team placed first in the All-Girl cheer division with a score of 78.5. Central Methodist finished second with a score of 64.3 and Benedictine finished third with a score of 60.7.
The Avila Dance team, known as the Glitter Girls, won first place in both the Large Dance division and the Hip-Hop division. The Glitter girls finished with a score of 87.6 in Large Dance and a score of 65.2 in Hip-Hop, with Graceland finishing in second place in both categories with scores of 74.2 and 56.2, respectively. Avila dance coach Cindy Freeman said that winning this competition was a great way to finish off the competition season for both dance and cheer, especially with how hard each program has worked this year.
“It was wonderful to be back at the HAAC Spirit Squad Competition this year,” said Freeman. “The last time we won the banner was 2008, so this group of young women had not had the opportunity to compete at the event. Our teams have worked so hard this year to prepare for their competition season. Finishing it out with first place in hip hop, first place in large dance, first place in all-girl cheer and a HAAC Championship win was amazing! I could not be more proud of both teams for how hard they work and how much they support one another. They are all GREAT representatives of Avila University.”
Avila cheer coach Melissa Shipman said bringing the title back to Avila is an amazing feeling for her and her cheerleaders. "We are so excited about bringing the banner back to Avila,” said Shipman. “The ladies on both of these teams worked so hard, and truly encompass what it means to be a student athlete here at Avila. As a coach, we are glad these teams both get to feel the honor of being recognized within our conference as being champions, and I couldn't be more proud of each of them!" Earlier this year, the Avila cheer team finished in fifth place at the UCA/UDA National Championships in Orlando, Fla., while the Glitter Girls earned an eighth place finish in the Hip-Hop category.
Cheer - All-Girl
Cheer – CO-ED
About Avila University
Avila University is a private, co-educational, values-based liberal arts institution founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs. Avila University is located at 119th and Wornall Rd in southwest suburban Kansas City, Mo.