Demons spirit squad aims for third straight title |

Demons spirit squad aims for third straight title

Post Independent Photo/Kara K. Pearson The Glenwood Springs High School cheer squad practice for the 4A state championships Wednesday evening. The event will be held at the Denver Coloseum Saturday.

For competitive cheerleading squads like Glenwood Springs, the most important part of participating at Colorado’s spirit championship Saturday at the Denver Coliseum is how the routine looks – not where they finish in the standings.”Our point is to stick the routine as best we can,” said senior Cassie Croissant. “We can’t control any of the other teams or what anyone else does except ourselves.”If we stick our routine the best we know how, (it’s) a tossup. We just want to do our best.”

And, over the past five years, the Demons have become one of the best competitive cheer teams in the state.This year, despite being hit hard by graduation, Glenwood hasn’t slipped much. With 10 freshmen and three more newcomers on the competitive team, the Demons qualified for the Universal Cheerleading Association’s national competition in Orlando, Fla., for the fifth straight year.”It’s a new squad, and they’re coming through,” said junior Carolyn Wiltse.Now, they’re taking aim at their third straight Class 4A state title.But that’s not the squad’s major goal, according to Wiltse.”We want to go on the mat and have full confidence knowing we can do it, perform to the best of our abilities and have no regrets. That would be more gratifying than a state championship.”

On Saturday, Glenwood is one of 31 teams shooting for the 4A state title. The format is different from most competitions in that teams must advance from preliminary competition to go for the championship. The Demons are scheduled to perform at 6:20 p.m. Saturday.The six teams with the best scores advance to the final round, where a champion will be selected.Rifle High School, which has competed as a dance team the past two years, also competes in the 4A cheer division. The Bears are scheduled to take the floor at 2:44 p.m. Basalt is the only area entry in the 3A classification, where the Longhorns pom team steps off at 12:40 p.m.Cardinals aiming higherA high finish is also on the minds of the Grand Valley High School cheerleaders, who compete in the Class 2A division.

Last year Grand Valley finished eighth in the 2A division.”That was major,” said Kayla Clark, the only senior on the 13-member squad that leads off the 2A preliminaries at 8:30 a.m. Saturday.”Talent-wise, we have girls who can do gymnastics, and can do things now that we haven’t been able to do in previous years,” said junior Rochelle Morrison.”Overall, there’s a lot of talent that we haven’t seen before. Now, we have to help the underclassmen to know how to do things. We’re making a lot of progress, and I’m really proud.”Clark agreed.”It’s changed a lot from when I started cheerleading as a sophomore to now,” she said. “We’ve gained people with more skill level, and people who are willing to do more and try new things. We’re looking forward to doing our best and make finals this year.”The four highest-scoring teams move on to the finals for the 2A state title, scheduled for 10:45 a.m. Saturday. The four highest-scoring teams move on to the finals for the 2A state title, scheduled for 10:45 a.m. Saturday.

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