Southland cheerleaders earn top awards at UCA competition

Published 11:36 am Wednesday, September 6, 2017


ATHENS, Ga. – The Southland Academy Varsity and Junior Varsity Cheerleading squads continued their tradition of capturing top awards at Universal Cheerleading Association (UCA) Summer Camp held at the University of Georgia in Athens recently. UCA is the oldest and largest cheerleading association in the world, and its goal is to inspire leadership on and off the field by providing high quality educational training for college, high school, and middle school cheerleaders.
Southland Varsity and Junior Varsity Cheerleaders competed with 25 other cheer squads totaling about 300 girls from Georgia and South Carolina. The girls participated in three days of learning new cheers, chants, dances, and stunts. Final competitions took place on the fourth day.
The varsity squad secured a Superior Trophy for their overall performance at the camp and placed second in Sideline Cheer in the Large Varsity category. The junior varsity squad also received a Superior Trophy and received the top trophy for Sideline Cheers and Overall Game Day, as well as placing second in Extreme Routine and Band Dance in the Middle School Category. The third night of camp both squads received the highest Spirit Award of “The Banana.”

Southland Academy JV cheerleaders pictured are (front) Lily Haugabook, Tate Young, Ella Arnold, Taylor Ragsdale; (back) Eva Grace Studdard, Lydia Anne Love, Averi Smith, Scarlett Carey, Anna Kate Horne, Lainey Collier.

There were also individual awards throughout the week. Eighth-grader Lydia Anne Love won the Best Jumper Award for the entire Middle School Category. Seventh-grader Lily Haugabook also participated in the Middle School Jump-off. Also participating in the Jump-Off on the high school level were junior Kara Hubbard, sophomore Emma Griffin, one of the top three high school jumpers, sophomore Sarah Murphy, and freshman Carson Clements. Southland had four girls named as All Americans: juniors Anslee Barnes, Mary Catherine Dean, Morgan Deriso, and Kara Hubbard.
In addition, senior Karson Duke received the prestigious Pin-It Forward Award for the fourth year in a row after the first day. Dean and Murphy also received the coveted Pin-It Forward Award after the second Day. Pin-It Forward Awards are awarded for outstanding positive attitudes and leadership throughout the entire four-day camp.
The Southland Varsity squad members are Duke (captain); alongside juniors Barnes, Dean, Deriso, and Hubbard; sophomores Ellie Barnes, Maddy Copeland, Leslie Anne Farr, Emma Griffin, Murphy, Parker Reeves, and Halley Kate Turner; and freshmen Sara Bass, Jordan Brehm, Clements, Addison Starlin, and Georgia Torbert. Susan Welch is the long-time varsity cheerleading coach and advisor. Welch also attended camp and participated in a coaches’ workshop for cheerleading.
The Southland junior varsity squad members are eighth graders Lydia Anne Love and Averi Smith; and seventh graders Ella Arnold, Scarlett Carey, Lainey Collier, Haugabook, Anna Grace Horne, Taylor Ragsdale, Eva Grace Studdard, and Tate Young.  The middle school squad is coached by Mrs. Shay Torbert, who also attended the four-day camp and coaches’ workshop.