Written and Media by Sara Dawson.
On March 2 and 3 of this year, the Panther cheerleaders competed in the 2017 Christian Cheerleaders of America National Competition. In previous years the competition was held in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, however this year the team had the privilege of attending the competition while it was hosted in New Bern, North Carolina. The Panther cheerleaders came home with three National Championships bringing with them wins in the large coed category, all college division, and the mascot competition, as even Hoguey came back with a win as well. The team of fifteen amazing cheerleaders competed against Kentucky Christian University. The team won National Champion rings, National Championship shirts, and a chance to participate in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Hoguey competed against Bryan the Lion in a dance-off with Bryan College.
The team is very excited for the 2017 and 2018 year. The team has eight new cheerleaders: Amberly Slone, Chloe Grimes, Desiree Milburn, Emily Koberlin, Kallie Cundiff, Katie Roberts, Patricia Harris, and Sammantha Steele. The new cheerleaders have definitely done a great job moving from high school cheer to collegiate-level cheerleading. The eight returning cheerleaders are Jayda Fowler, Deja Plachta, Ka’Myra Walls, Miguel Kronbach, Bradley Stubbs, Sara Dawson, Tywon Bender, and Shannon Niehaus. This team is composed of students representing each class level and from many diverse backgrounds from around the United States. The year has come to a great start with sixteen fantastic cheerleaders.
The Panther cheerleaders started the season off with a week of camp before most students returned to campus. The team learned many things during the week of camp, including new pyramids, new stunts, chants, cheers, cadences, and dances. Camp helped the team come together as a family. One of the most-loved activities was the team bonding every night after a hard day of camp. The team bonding consisted of attending a Cardinals game, going to Dave and Buster’s, playing card games, tie-dyeing shirts, and singing at a karaoke night. The Panther cheerleaders learned so much in one week and are very excited to put forth these skills in the new football and basketball seasons.
Shannon Niehaus, a second-year panther Cheerleader, said: “I’m pretty excited; I feel like it is going to be a great year.” The team has put in many hours of work since being back on campus. These include team practices five days a week.
The team is asking for other males to try out for stuntman and mascot positions. If anyone is interested, contact Coach Washington for details at Cheer@greenville.edu. Coach Washington said, “I’m super excited for the upcoming year. We have a lot of newcomers and a lot of great talent that came in over the summer. Really looking forward to taking the envelope to the next level with the team as we compete at a large competition this year!” The team will be competing in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, in March for another National Championship. Make sure not to miss it!